COVID-19: tributes paid to nurses and HCAs who have died

Tributes paid to dedicated and passionate health professionals 

Areema Nasreen was a nurse at Walsall Manor Hospital. Picture Alamy
Areema Nasreen was a nurse at Walsall Manor Hospital. Picture: Alamy

Tributes have been paid to two nurses and two healthcare assistants (HCAs) who have died after being diagnosed with COVID-19.

Nurse Areema Nasreen had been on a ventilator at Walsall Manor Hospital in the West Midlands, where she worked, when her condition deteriorated and she died on 2 April.

Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust chief executive Richard Beeken said: ‘Any death is devastating but losing one of our own is beyond words.

‘Areema was extremely committed to her role as a staff nurse on the acute medical unit at Walsall Manor Hospital.’

Blessed to have the role of a nurse

The trust described Ms Nasreen as a professional, passionate nurse who started out as a housekeeper in 2003, before working hard to gain her nursing qualification in January 2019.

Mr Beeken added that the trust will do everything it can to support Ms Nasreen’s colleagues in the days and weeks ahead.

‘Her vocation in nursing was clear for all to see. She always said that she was so blessed to have the role of a nurse, which she absolutely loved because she felt like ‘she could make a difference’ – and you did, Areema.'

'She would have gone on to have a great career'

Tributes were also paid to nurse Aimee O’Rourke, who died at Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Hospital in Margate, Kent, on Thursday.

Julie Gammon, ward manager on the acute medical unit where Ms O'Rourke worked, said her team were devastated by the loss.

'She was such a kind and caring nurse, and she had a really special relationship with her patients and colleagues,' she said.

'Nursing was something she had always wanted to do, although she came to it relatively late after raising her girls.

Ms Gammon added: 'She was really growing and developing in her skills and confidence and I know she would have gone on to have a great career.'

Trust tribute to dedicated HCA

HCA Thomas Harvey, 57, a father of seven who worked at Goodmayes Hospital in Ilford, east London, died at home on 29 March after feeling unwell for several days.

Professor Oliver Shanley, chief executive of the North East London Foundation Trust, said: 'Thomas was a longstanding, dedicated member of our intermediate care team. This is a huge loss to both NELFT and the wider NHS.'

HCA Glen Corbin had worked at the Park Royal Centre for Mental Health in Harlesden, north-west London, for more than 25 years.

Claire Murdoch, head of Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, described Mr Corbin as part of the 'backbone' of the team.

'He was the "go to" person who knew everything about the ward and how to get things done,' she said.

She added: 'Glen was a much-loved colleague and will be sorely missed.'

View our COVID-19 resources centre

In other news