Emma Smith, a higher level teaching assistant from Southwater, has praised the care she received at East Surrey Hospital after being treated for coronavirus.

Emma developed symptoms including a high temperature, aches, loss of taste and smell, nausea, fatigue and shortness of breath on 20 March. When she deteriorated she was brought to East Surrey Hospital by ambulance.

She was cared for by a number of teams at the hospital, including in intensive care and the medical wards, before recovering enough to be discharged home on 17 April.

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Emma said: “The care was amazing, all the staff were so caring, holding my hand through everything. I’m just so grateful. Even though you cannot see faces due to the masks the staff wear, you can tell people are caring by the warmth they give you. I just want to thank everyone who looked after me for saving my life. The nurses took so much time to sit and talk to me so I never felt that I was alone.”

Emma, 49, is excited to get home to see her husband, two sons, daughter and granddaughter. She is appealing for the public to keep following the guidelines to reduce the spread of infection.

Emma said: “I know it’s hard but please do follow the guidelines, stay home and stay safe.”