Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 30 May 2020

Coronavirus: Frontline doctor latest UK health worker to die

Three doctors who have died in the UK are all of Arab descent

Dr Amged El Hawrani, 55, an ear, nose and throat specialist, died in Leicester in central England on Saturday night. Family photo
Dr Amged El Hawrani, 55, an ear, nose and throat specialist, died in Leicester in central England on Saturday night. Family photo

Dr Amged El Hawrani has become the latest medical worker to die in the UK after testing positive for coronavirus.

Dr El Hawrani, 55, an ear, nose and throat specialist, died in Leicester in central England on Saturday night. He had been on life support for nearly two weeks.

His death follows the passing of Sudanese surgeon Adil El Tayar and Habib Zaidi, who had a Pakistani background, last week in the UK.

The UK government is streamlining measures to make face masks and hand wash amid fears that doctors do not have enough personal protective equipment.

“Most of my dad’s time was dedicated towards his family and the rest of that time was dedicated towards his profession,” said Dr El Hawrani’s son, Ashraf.

“He taught me the significance of respect and equality. He also stressed the importance of not worrying about the things I cannot control, which he displayed to me right up until the end of his life.

“He did not seek the praise and approval of others. He was satisfied by viewing the positive effects of his actions and the well-being of his family."

A JustGiving page under Mr El Hawrani’s name, which was set up to raise money for the hospital at which he worked, said he went on a trek through the Himalayas with friends in 2010.

That effort brought in £2,295 (Dh10,499).

"His greatest passions were his family and his profession, and he dedicated his life to both," a spokesman for his family said.

"He was the rock of our family, incredibly strong, compassionate, caring and giving.

"He always put everyone else before himself. We all turned to him when we needed support and he was always there for us.

"He had so many responsibilities and yet he never complained.

“Amged reached the very top of his profession and we know he made a difference to thousands of lives during his career.

"He viewed his role as a doctor as one of life’s most noble pursuits.”

Dr El Hawrani was described as a leader who taught many doctors to be better.

Dr El Tayar, 63, an organ transplant consultant, had worked in his native Sudan and Saudi Arabia and had returned to work to support the battle against the coronavirus.

“He wanted to be sent where he would be most useful in the crisis," his cousin, British-Sudanese journalist Zeinab Badawi, told the BBC.

“That was typical of my cousin Adil, always willing to help, always with a willing smile.

“It had taken just 12 days for Adil to go from a seemingly fit and capable doctor working in a busy hospital to lying in a hospital morgue.”

Dr Zaidi, a general practitioner, had left a “gaping” hole in the hearts of his family, his daughter Sarah said.

"For that to be the thing that took him is too much to bear," she told the BBC.

"It is reflective of his sacrifice. He had a vocational attitude to service."

Zaidi had reportedly not seen patients in the week before his death.

On social media, tributes poured in for the doctors from patients and colleagues.

"That doctor that died from corona virus Dr Amged El Hawrani, he was the one who was doing my dad's check-ups in the ENT department when my dad has cancer," Twitter user Abrar Hussein wrote.

"Dad heard about him and was really hurt by it, saying he was such a amazing person. Crazy how short life is."

Labour party MP Zara Sultana said on Twitter: "My heart goes out to the loved ones of Dr Amged El Hawrani, Dr Adil El Tayar and Dr Habib Zaidi.

"And to all our frontline NHS staff: thank you for your courage and self-sacrifice."

Gavin Boyle, chief executive at the University Hospitals of Derby and Burton, paid tribute to his colleague.

"Mr El Hawrani, known to his colleagues as Amged, was an extremely hard-working consultant and ear, nose and throat trainer who was well liked at the trust, and particularly at Queen's Hospital Burton where he worked.

"Amged played a leading role in the merger between the hospitals in Burton and Derby and helped to bring the two clinical teams together.

“He was keen to support colleagues outside of ENT and was well known across a wide number of departments."

Updated: March 30, 2020 09:12 AM

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