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‘Hugely respected’ Essex GP died with coronavirus

NHS Southend CCG has confirmed the first case of a GP dying after being infected with the coronavirus (Covid-19).

The family of Essex GP Dr Habib Zaidi, 76, told the BBC that they believed he died with coronavirus last week.

Dr Zaidi, a partner at Leigh-on-Sea’s Eastwood Group Practice, is understood to have died in intensive care in Southend Hospital on 25 March. 

A CCG spokesperson told Pulse regarding Dr Zaidi’s death: ‘We can confirm there was a positive test result for Covid-19.’

Dr Jose Garcia-Lobera, GP chair of NHS Southend CCG, said: ‘Our heartfelt condolences go out to Dr Zaidi’s family at this devastating time.

‘A hugely respected, selfless man who dedicated his life to helping others, Dr Zaidi will always be remembered for his significant contribution to local health services through his long career as a GP.

‘His loss is deeply felt by his staff, fellow clinicians and the wider community. Our thoughts are with his family, who we hope, in time, can take comfort from the incredible legacy he has left behind.’  

Dr Hamid Mahgoub, Covid-19 incident director for Public Health England East, said: ‘We are saddened by the death of a GP from Essex and our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.

‘The individual did not see patients while they were symptomatic. His close contacts that may have seen him whilst he was symptomatic have been following the self-isolation guidance.’

Earlier today, a Derby-based doctor was also confirmed to have died with the virus.

Mr Amged El-Hawrani, 55, was an associate clinical director and ENT specialist at University Hospitals of Derby and Burton, and died on Saturday (28 March) at Leicester’s Glenfield Hospital.

As of 5pm yesterday, 1,408 patients in the UK who tested positive for Covid-19 have died.