Coronavirus: 'I have seen some devastating things, but nothing has prepared me for this' - nurse's desperate plea for Sheffielders to follow advice

A nurse working at the frontline of the battle against coronavirus has issued a stark message to people in Sheffield.

Monday, 23rd March 2020, 3:10 pm

Sonia Fairbairn told how she is involved in contingency planning to provide the extra ventilated beds that will be needed to treat people with COVID-19.

She warned that things are about to get a lot worse and urged people to follow government advice about social distancing to help prevent the virus spreading and save lives.

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Sheffield's Northern General Hospital, where 78-year-old Leonard Gibson became the first person to die in the city after contracting coronavirus

In a message shared with the Beighton Community Forum Facebook group, she wrote: “For me, what is happening in Italy will soon become reality. I have seen some devastating things in my career, but nothing has prepared me for what me and my colleagues are about to face.

“I am pleading with you all to follow the advice with regards to social distancing. This is what will save lives, your lives, your families’ lives, my life.

“You may have the virus for up to 10 days before you get symptoms. Imagine how many people you may have come into contact with before you know you have it. How many people will they come into contact with and so on.

“This is affecting all ages not just the elderly. Please do your bit to flatten the curve. Stay home, stay safe!”

There had been 5,683 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK as of yesterday, Sunday, March 22, with 281 people having died.

In Sheffield, 82 people have tested positive and three have been three deaths.

Italy, where nearly 5,500 people have died, has been placed on lockdown.