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'You're wrong if you think it's not going to affect you': Intensive care consultant reveals her unit is full of 20 to 40 year olds battling coronavirus as she warns 'everybody is at risk'

'You're wrong if you think it's not going to affect you': Intensive care consultant reveals her unit is full of 20 to 40 year olds battling coronavirus as she warns 'everybody is at risk'
  • Dr Ami Jones has urged the public to abide by the government's lockdown rules
  • She has seen infected patients on her ward who were 'previously fit and well' 
  • Royal Gwent Hospital, Newport, aiming to help six times more people than usual
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
People must abide by the coronvirus lockdown rules in order to stop the spread of Covid-19 and avoid hospitals becoming overwhelmed, an intensive care consultant has warned.
Dr Ami Jones, who works at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport, said the hospital is 'very, very busy' and her unit is full of younger people ill with the virus - not just the over-70s. 
'We have already surged beyond our standard capacity,' she told ITV News. 
'It's not just the vulnerable and elderly that are getting poorly - my unit is full of 20-, 30- and 40-year-olds.'
Dr Ami Jones, who works at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport, said the hospital is 'very, very busy' and her unit is full of younger people ill with the virus
Dr Ami Jones, who works at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport, said the hospital is 'very, very busy' and her unit is full of younger people ill with the virus
The Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport, pictured, is looking to exceed six times its normal critical care capacity in response to the pandemic
Dr Jones works for the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, which has almost half the total number of Covid-19 patients in Wales.
She said the hospital is 'very prepared' and has 'surge plans' in place to cope with an influx of sick patients.
'We are looking to exceed six times our normal critical care capacity, but it's not just a case of giving us ventilators - we need more staff and we need other equipment.'
Dr Jones urged the public to stay at home and only leave for essential journeys.
'We are prepared to surge if we need to but we hope we don't. We hope lockdown and social distancing will flatten the curve, but people do need to lock down,' she said.
'Popping to the shops for a paper is not essential - everybody is at risk.'
'I've got ITU patients on my ward who were previously fit and well so if you think it's not going to affect you and you can just go out and do what you want then you are wrong.
'You will end up in ITU if you are not careful.'
Dr Jones said she did not have concerns about the availability of personal protective equipment in the hospital.
'I actually feel more at risk when I'm out shopping, because it's full of people I can't control who might not be washing their hands,' she said.

The number of people admitted to hospitals in England with coronavirus has soared in the past 10 days, particularly in London, which is still at the heart of the country's outbreak
The number of people admitted to hospitals in England with coronavirus has soared in the past 10 days, particularly in London, which is still at the heart of the country's outbreak
Dr Jones, who deployed to Afghanistan while in the British Army, said Wales is 'ahead of the curve with testing' and the health board has been swift in getting people swabbed.
'Everybody is working really hard, being very professional,' she said.
'We are giving good patient care and I feel reassured what we are delivering to patients is of the highest standard.
'I hope we are able to continue doing that as patient numbers increase.'
Meanwhile, a colleague of Dr Jones who recorded a video message describing suffering from coronavirus has returned to work.
Dr David Hepburn, a consultant intensivist, said: 'It's great to be back at work and great to feel better and really pleased to be able to treat patients again and really pleased to be able to get back into it.
'It looks likely we are going to have a really busy few months.'
It comes as the UK recorded another 563 coronavirus deaths today, making it the worst day so far in the devastating COVID-19 crisis.
The increase takes the country's total death toll to 2,352 - today's surge is 48 per cent larger than yesterday's increase of 381 fatalities and pushes the total up by 31 per cent in a day.
And 29,474 people have now tested positive for COVID-19. The UK is the fifth hardest-hit nation in Europe and eighth in the world.
Wales today recorded 29 new deaths caused by the coronavirus along with a further 16 fatalities in Scotland and two in Northern Ireland. 486 victims were declared in England and 11 remain unaccounted for.
The youngest patient announced today was a 13-year-old, believed to be Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab from Brixton, London, whose tragic death came to light last night after he died at King's College Hospital on Monday. The oldest patient included in today's update was 99 years old.
Today overtakes yesterday as Britain's darkest day so far in the escalating crisis. Tuesday saw a then-record of 381 deaths and 3,009 cases declared across the home nations. 
But the true size of the outbreak remains a mystery because of the UK's controversial policy to only test patients in hospital - and not the tens of thousands of Britons with milder symptoms who are recovering at at home. 

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