Coronavirus survivor compares NHS staff to WWII Spitfire pilots after he’s given guard of honour as he leaves hospital – The Sun

A CORONAVIRUS survivor has hailed hero NHS staff as the “spitfire pilots of 1940” after winning his battle against the deadly bug.

Dad-of-two Hylton Murray-Philipson was discharged the day after his 61st birthday after fighting the killer bug for 12 days at Leicester Royal Infirmary.

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The farmer from Market Harborough, Leics, who spent a week on a ventilator in intensive care, praised NHS staff, saying: "These really are the heroes of the moment. These are the Spitfire pilots of 1940.


He told the BBC: "We know how special the NHS is [but] the difference for me is I now know the individuals by name and I want to say thank you to all of those people from the bottom of my heart."

And Hylton described the moment he left to a guard of honour as "one of the great moments of my life,” saying: "I was on a major high feeling I had made it.”

Now home, he said he appreciates “every little thing like the twittering of birds that you take for granted” and was devouring toast and marmalade which he had been “fantasising about in hospital.”

He told the Leicester Mercury: "When you have battled for every breath, everything just feels incredible, a real privilege.

"I feel like I’ve been reborn."

The dad-of-two had struggled with a dry cough for nine days before being admitted to the hospital.

In a tragic detail, the day Mr Murray-Philipson was admitted to hospital his own 92-year-old father had died from a non-coronavirus related death.

He said that while he had tried to keep a "stiff upper lip" over his symptoms, his family decided to call an ambulance.

Admitted to hospital, his condition continued to deteriorate – having to spend seven days in intensive care on a ventilator.

The 61-year-old said: "I was fighting for breath, I spent five days fighting for my life. There were moments of great distress, great panic.

"There were moments I doubted I could carry on."

But amazingly, Mr Murray-Philipson managed to recover thanks to the care from staff at the Leicester Royal Infirmary on his 61st birthday.

And it was then that the touching guard of honour unfolded.

The dad was seen overcome with emotion as he waved to staff while being wheeled down the corridor to head home.


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His case comes as the UK continues to battle the virus, with more than 7,000 deaths.

Dr Chris Miller, consultant on ward 23 said: "This is an example, not only of the care Mr Murray-Philipson has received on ward 23, but to the exceptional care that occurs across all our hospitals, every day of the week.

"After a very tough week, this has really been a light at the end of the tunnel.”

Andrew Furlong, medical director at Leicester’s hospitals, added: "We are discharging patients on a daily basis who have recovered from Covid-19.

"Our staff are providing amazing care and it’s a joy when we’re able to see patients well enough to leave our hospitals."

Brits up and down the country have previously applauded NHS workers in a groundswell of support for medics at the frontline.

Millions of people came to their front doors and onto balconies to proudly clap for those on the frontline on the past two Thursdays.

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And medics have begged Brits to listen to the health warnings as they face the brutal reality of the disease.

One exasperated ICU nurse posted a tearful request to urge all Brits to stay at home and support the NHS as the coronavirus pandemic brings staff to their knees.

Shirley Watts, an operating theatre nurse at Basildon University Hospital in Essex, said she wanted people "to see the reality of what's going on" describing the situation as "desperate" and short staffed.

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