A British woman has issued a heartfelt plea after watching her mother die in the hospital bed next to her.
Both women were admitted to hospital after coronavirus “ravaged through” their family late last year, ultimately claiming its oldest member.
Anabel Sharma, 49, spent nearly two months in hospital and has since shared a haunting photo showing the final moments she shared with her 76-year-old mother Maria as they both battled the virus.
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After a fortnight in intensive care in the same hospital, Maria held hands with her daughter for the last time and announced her funeral wishes, iTV reported.
“All I heard was ‘funeral’, she said ‘cremation’ and I said to the doctors I can’t hear what she’s saying.
“She was telling me not to be scared and that I had to keep fighting for the children but that she had had enough,” Ms Sharma told the UK broadcaster.
The doctor informed her that her mother had earlier signed a Do Not Resuscitate order.
When she asked what that meant, the doctor was blunt. “Your mum is dying,” he told her.
Ms Sharma believes one of her sons caught the novel coronavirus at school and it then “ravaged through” the family at a “frightening” speed.
She shared her experience as the country faces an explosion of infections, in part attributed to a more transmissible variant of the pathogen.
“I would ask people to follow all the precautions and think of others,” she said.
British PM says ‘hospitals under more pressure’
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ordered England into a new national lockdown to try to slow a Covid-19 surge threatening to overwhelm parts of the health system.
“As I speak to you tonight, our hospitals are under more pressure from Covid than any time since the start of the pandemic," Johnson said in a televised address on Monday (local time).
The nationwide lockdown is a departure from the previously regional approach to fighting the pandemic.
“With most of the country already under extreme measures, it's clear that we need to do more together to bring this new variant under control.
“We must therefore go into a national lockdown, which is tough enough to contain this variant. That means the government is once again instructing you to stay at home.”
Johnson said the measures would include school closures from Tuesday and rules requiring most people to stay at home apart from essential shopping, exercise and other limited exceptions.
As Britain grapples with the world's sixth highest death toll and cases hit a new high, the country's chief medical officers said the spread of COVID-19 risked overwhelming parts of the health system within 21 days.
Since the start of the pandemic, more than 75,000 people in the UK have died from Covid-19 within 28 days of a positive test.
A record 58,784 new cases of the coronavirus were reported on Monday (local time).