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Coronavirus: Ulster Hospital consultant in online plea as she warns huge numbers could die if people do not heed advice

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Dr Julia Courtney

Dr Julia Courtney

Dr Julia Courtney

In a hard-hitting video posted on Twitter at the weekend, Ulster Hospital respiratory consultant Dr Julia Courtney spelled out the scale of the looming healthcare disaster facing Northern Ireland and its people, warning that "huge numbers of people will die".

Speaking directly to camera, Dr Courtney said: "As a respiratory consultant in the Ulster Hospital, this is a personal plea.

"It is hard to actually convey the enormity of the crisis that is looming for the NHS and, so, for everyone in the next few weeks.

"Huge numbers of people will die and the only thing that will have any impact on this impending catastrophe is slowing the spread of this virus.

"This is the week that the most people who are infected without knowing it will cause the virus to spread.

"What you do today will affect the ICU beds in the hospitals in the next two to three weeks.

"So, please, please, please - stay at home if you can," she pleaded. Dr Courtney's impassioned social media call came after health professionals revealed all emergency departments at hospitals in Northern Ireland are being divided into two parts - one for Covid-19 victims and the other for regular cases.

Northern Ireland's Public Health Agency also shared Courtney's sobering video and said: "Every one of us has our role to play in helping to prevent the spread of coronavirus and saving lives. NOW."

The Department of Health also retweeted the video, adding: "We can all help save lives. Be part of the fightback. Keep your distance. Wash your hands."

Belfast Telegraph