The Irish family of Dr. Amged El-Hawrani, who died from COVID-19 in the UK, has told of the utter devastation of his passing.
Dr. Amged El-Hawrani, 55, died in a hospital in the English midlands on Saturday, March 28 after testing positive for Coronavirus. He was one of the first NHS doctors to die from the virus.
He worked as an ear, nose and throat consultant at Queen's Hospital in Burton.
Dr. El-Hawrani graduated from the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin in 1993 and met his wife, Pamela, from Carlow, while studying there in the 1980s.
His wife is heartbroken over his passing, according to Francis Foley, Dr. El-Hawrani's brother-in-law.
"She is heartbroken," Foley told the Irish Independent. "We are all devastated over Amged's death. You couldn't meet a kinder or more selfless man. Anyone that met him was richer for the experience. His passion was for his family and his work and that's what he dedicated his life to.
"He was known for his dedication to his patients everywhere and it is just so hard to believe. He is gone too soon."
Dr. El-Hawrani worked for a time in Beaumont Hospital in Dublin before moving to the UK to work for the NHS. He is survived by his wife and his only son, Ashraf.
The doctor was reportedly fit and healthy before he contracted the virus.
Tragically, 3 UK doctors have now died after testing positive for #Covid_19.
Habib Zaidi, Amged El’Hawrani and Adil El Tayar, thank you for your service.
We will never forget the debt we owe NHS workers.— David Lammy (@DavidLammy) March 30, 2020
Dr. El-Hawrani's funeral took place on Tuesday in Bristol and Foley said it was very hard on his sister since none of her Irish family could attend the funeral.
"It's been very tough not being able to be there to support our sister and Ashraf," said Foley. "We couldn't be there for them at a time when we all wanted to be. The whole family here in Carlow will miss Amged immensely. There are no words."
Meanwhile, Cathal Kelly, CEO of the RCSI's University of Medical and Health Sciences, also paid tribute to his former alumni.
“At RCSI, we join our community of alumni around the world who will be deeply affected by the loss of Amged. We are proud to have known him and of his professional dedication,” Kelly said.
Dr. El-Hawrani's colleagues at Queen's Hospital in Burton also paid tribute to him with a minute's silence on Monday.