‘Our hearts are broken’: Family pays tribute as midwife who died after contracting coronavirus named

Relatives say NHS midwife’s love was ‘unfailing’ in statement on her death

Conrad Duncan
Monday 06 April 2020 08:08
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The family of a midwife who died after testing positive for coronavirus have said their “hearts are broken” over the loss of their “wonderful and caring mum, sister, daughter and grandmother”.

Lynsay Coventry, who was 54, has been named as the first serving NHS midwife in England who has died from Covid-19, according to the Princess Alexandra Hospital Trust (PAHT).

“As a family, our hearts are broken at the loss of our loving, wonderful and caring mum, sister, daughter and grandmother,” Coventry’s relatives said in a statement.

“We each know how much she loved and cherished us. Her love for us all was unfailing and her strength in the way she cared and supported us will fill our memories.

“What we also know is how proud she was to be an NHS midwife.”

Meanwhile, Coventry’s colleagues have highlighted her “professionalism and commitment” throughout her 10 years working at the trust and noted the hundreds of women she supported.

Lance McCarthy, chief executive of the PAHT, paid tribute to Ms Coventry’s years of service and said the loss would be felt by colleagues in the maternity team and across the entire organisation.

Jacqueline Dunkley-Bent, the chief midwifery officer for England, said she had been “deeply moved and saddened” to hear of the death.

“Lynsay was clearly a highly regarded midwife whose dedication to women, babies and their families will be remembered and cherished by her own family and her colleagues,” she said.

“My deepest thoughts are with them, her children, grandchildren, parents and siblings.”

Ms Dunkley-Bent noted there had been an “outpouring of support” for the NHS during the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, with people across the country taking to their balconies and gardens in recent weeks to applaud health staff and other key workers.

However, she said the best way for people to “do their bit” for midwives and other NHS staff was to follow government advice and stay at home.

The latest figures from the Department of Health showed the number of coronavirus-related hospital deaths was 4,934, as of 5pm on Saturday, up by 621 from the day before.

Additional reporting by PA

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