Daughter of medic who died urges rule breakers to take Covid seriously

Daughter of healthy paramedic who died at 52 from Covid-19 urges lockdown rule breakers to take coronavirus seriously

  • Lauren Hart said her father Peter helped influx of patients at East Surrey Hospital
  • Mr Hart caught virus in April and died on 52nd birthday after a month-long battle
  • He left behind wife Helen, 53, Lauren, 23, and son Daniel, 24, a student doctor

The daughter of a healthy and active paramedic who died from Covid-19 last May has urged lockdown breakers to take the virus seriously.

Lauren Hart, 23, said her father Peter helped to tackle the influx of patients at East Surrey Hospital during the first wave of the virus.

Mr Hart, a former management consultant who pursued his true passion for medicine in his 40s, caught the virus in April and died on his 52nd birthday after a month-long battle.

Miss Hart, from Smallfield in Surrey, who used to work as a receptionist in the hospital’s A&E department, is appealing to the public to stay inside, follow lockdown laws and recognise the severity of the virus.

Paramedic Peter Hart with son Daniel and daughter Lauren in 2018. Mr Hart was a former management consultant who pursued his true passion for medicine in his 40s

‘It’s so easy for people to act like they are immune to this, but if you look at my dad’s case – a healthy and active man with no prior issues – it’s difficult to see how people still don’t think this is real,’ she said. ‘People just need to understand, you may be fit and healthy but you just don’t know how the virus will affect you.

‘Covid deniers need to spend just five minutes in an ICU ward and see how hard these nurses and frontline staff work.’

Mr Hart was active throughout his life, whether it be walking the family dog or going into the nearby Redhill hospital to provide pet therapy on his day off.

He left behind wife Helen, 53, Lauren and 24-year-old son Daniel, a student doctor.

Miss Hart, who is now a production secretary at ITV, said: ‘He absolutely loved his job, and during the time I worked with him for three years, I saw exactly how much he enjoyed being there.

Lauren Hart (pictured with Mr Hart) said her father Peter helped to tackle the influx of patients at East Surrey Hospital during the first wave of the virus

‘To have to take him to hospital – that’s when how severe this virus is really hit home. It was such a tough time – we were waiting every day for the phone call just to see how he was doing, as we couldn’t be inside the hospital.

‘I’m hoping this second virus strain and the experience of last year will make people more aware of this.’

Spending time outside may be a rare solace for many, but Miss Hart urged people to recognise the sacrifice healthcare workers were making.

Mr Hart was active throughout his life, whether it be walking the family dog or going into the nearby Redhill hospital to provide pet therapy on his day off. Pictured: A card made for Mr Hart in May while he was in hospital 

‘Mental health is a difficult subject and we are all struggling with lockdown, but I always just want to bring it back to these hard-working healthcare staff who stop so many from losing a loved one.

‘The least we can do is stay at home and do our small bit for the NHS. Staying in for a few more months while the vaccine gets rolled out could save a loved one and make a big impact.

‘You get people saying it’s all a hoax. I can’t even imagine how disheartening that is for the NHS staff to hear.’

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