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'We are on our knees': Tearful intensive care nurse makes desperate plea for people to stay at home and warns she and her colleagues are 'sinking' under the pressure of coronavirus Operating theatre nurse Shirley Watts says the NHS is 'on its knees' The Basildon, Essex nurse says her hospital is 'desperately short of staff' She pleads: 'We're all just doing what we can to save people's loved ones'

'We are on our knees': Tearful intensive care nurse makes desperate plea for people to stay at home and warns she and her colleagues are 'sinking' under the pressure of coronavirus Operating theatre nurse Shirley Watts  says the NHS is 'on its knees'  The Basildon, Essex nurse says her hospital is 'desperately short of staff' She pleads: 'We're all just doing what we can to save people's loved ones'
  • Operating theatre nurse Shirley Watts  says the NHS is 'on its knees' 
  • The Basildon, Essex nurse says her hospital is 'desperately short of staff'
  • She pleads: 'We're all just doing what we can to save people's loved ones' 
A tearful nurse is pleading with the country to stay home and support the NHS as the pressure of the coronavirus pandemic leaves staff on their knees.
Shirley Watts, an operating theatre nurse at Basildon University Hospital in Essex, fights back tears as she tells the country how stretched staff are as they try and stem the tide of coronavirus patients.
Speaking to the camera she says: 'We're desperately short of staff. Things are really difficult and we're all struggling. 
Pleading for people to stay inside, the Basildon nurse encouraged the public to call out people they know who are ignoring social distancing rules
Pleading for people to stay inside, the Basildon nurse encouraged the public to call out people they know who are ignoring social distancing rules
'If you stay in and you don't spread it and you don't catch it, that takes the pressure off of us because we're all on our knees at the moment.'
She continues: 'We're trying to save lives, we're all just doing what we can to save people's loved ones and I want you to see me like this because I want people to realise how serious it is.
'If you know anyone that's going out and they don't need to if you see groups of people, I want you to say something to them. I want you say "you need to stay indoors and you need to stop spreading it, you need to stop catching it".'
Shirley had just finished a shift at Basildon University Hospital this afternoon. She will return tonight to carry on helping coronavirus patients
Shirley had just finished a shift at Basildon University Hospital this afternoon. She will return tonight to carry on helping coronavirus patients 
Since Britain went into lockdown the public has taken part in two nationwide claps to show its appreciation for the NHS. But this weekend's warm weather has seen the public ignoring social distancing rules.
A tearful Shirley adds: 'I know people are appreciating what we're doing, that we're staying away from our families and putting ourselves in danger to try and save other people's loved ones.
'It feels like a losing battle, but it's not because we've all got hope and we're all trying to do what we can.' 
Shirley was speaking after finishing a six hour shift, she told viewers she was going home to sleep before returning for another shift tonight.

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