Emotional plea from Covid survivor: 'take this virus seriously'

  • Video report by Matthew Taylor

A Carlisle woman who was taken ill with coronavirus just before the New Year has made an emotional plea for people to obey restrictions.

Speaking from her hospital bed at the Cumberland Infirmary, 42-year-old Sharon Davidson says NHS staff there are extremely busy with Covid patients - and that she feels lucky to be alive. 

She told our reporter Matthew Taylor, "the hospital is packed to the rafters there was 40 odd ambulances on the ward before I was on this one parked up in the space of one hour in one day that I can remember. The ambulance bays have been non-stop ferrying people with Covid. It really is a life or death situation this covid."

In Cumbria cases of Covid 19 and hospital admissions are rising rapidly. 

According to Cumbria's Director of Public Health Colin Cox, hospitals in North Cumbria are near capacity. They moved into Opel (operational pressures escalation level) alert Level 4 at the beginning of the week, and health officials say the pressure on services is so great they can no longer guarantee 'comprehensive care' for patients. Carlisle now has a rate of more than 1000 cases per 100,000 people. In Eden, it's more than 720 and in Allerdale it is 537. There are 424 cases per 100,000 people per week in Barrow and 397 in Copeland. The lowest rate of infection is in the South Lakes with 299.