This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

pulse june2020 80x101px
Read the latest issue online

GPs go forth

Two more GPs die with coronavirus

A further two GPs have died with coronavirus (Covid-19).

Dr Fayaz Ayache, 76, and Dr Zishan Haider, in his 80s, were both based in the Essex area.

Having spent more than four decades in the NHS in Suffolk, Dr Ayache retired in 2018.

However, he soon returned to work part-time on the basis of feeling his ‘duty to help people’, and was most recently a GP at North Clacton Medical Group and medical lead at an Ipswich Hospital ENT clinic. 

He died in Ipswich Hospital last Wednesday (8 April), where he had been admitted six days prior and was diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia and coronavirus.

Dr Ed Garratt, executive lead for the Suffolk and North East Essex Integrated Care System, said: ‘Dr Ayache was a much loved and very highly regarded GP who had made a massive contribution to the NHS since he arrived in the UK from Syria nearly half a century ago.

‘Any death connected to this horrendous virus is a tragedy, but even more so when it takes someone who has devoted their life and career to helping others overcome health difficulties.

‘Our thoughts and condolences are with Dr Ayache’s family, friends, colleagues and patients, both past and present, at this very sad time.’

Dr Zishan Haider was a partner at Valence Medical Centre in Dagenham, east London, and died at Queen’s Hospital, Romford. 

Dr Haider 525x350

Dr Haider

Source: The Haider family

According to his family, he encouraged medics to focus on other patients instead of himself. 

The Express and Star reported that his son, also a doctor, summarised his father as a ‘selfless man driven by his passion for his profession’.

He continued: ‘Even whilst in hospital breathing his last, he was urging doctors and nurses to pay attention to other patients rather than him.

‘Many at his age would have retired, yet his dedication to his profession was immeasurable.’

A third Essex-based GP, Dr Habib Zaidi, died with coronavirus last month.

Over the weekend, health secretary Matt Hancock faced criticism when he failed to confirm in a press briefing how many NHS staff have died with the virus. 

It was later clarified that the figure stood at 32 at the time, although it has since risen again. 

Readers' comments (10)

  • Glad Pulse gives them the written legacy they deserve.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Pulse should be doing this for all falling GPs at the moment.

    Its worth more than an 8pm clap

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Surly the GPs who are in high risk groups should not be sound face to face contacts?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Utterly reckless to permit elderly males to return. This is a disease that selectively kills old men.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • @ Stelvio | Locum GP14 Apr 2020 5:18pm

    Utterly reckless to permit elderly males to return.’

    Some might suggest that it is akin to a death sentence?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Thank you Pulse for the great journalism once again.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • They chose to go to war and they lost their lives in the line of duty doing what they loved.

    That is not reckless. It was their choice. It is brave.

    They should be honoured.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Thanks Pulse for highlighting these great souls and their noble contributions. There should be some form of financial support for the families who lost there loved ones fighting on the frontline.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • More should be done to protect vulnerable individuals. Not doing it is clearly dangerous.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • there probably IS financial support out there for their families somewhere - unless of course you are a locum who dies on your day off !

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say