Coronavirus: Call to protect Filipino health workers

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image copyrightUniversity Hospitals of Derby and Burton trust
image captionNorman Austria died on Wednesday at Royal Derby Hospital

The Philippines' ambassador to the UK has called for key workers to be "properly protected" after the deaths of 23 Filipino healthcare workers.

Among those who died include Norman Austria, a healthcare assistant in Derbyshire and Jun Terre, a nurse in Buckinghamshire.

Antonio Lagdameo said they were "heroes who put their lives on the line".

The NHS has introduced risk assessments for all BAME staff in the wake of the concerns.

The PA news agency had verified the deaths of 173 frontline health and care workers with Covid-19.

Of those approximately 13% were of Filipino heritage.

Ambassador Lagdameo said: "I urge the NHS to ensure that those heroes who put their lives on the line for all of us are properly protected and equipped as they do their job."

Last week saw the death of Norman Austria, a Filipino healthcare assistant at the University Hospitals of Derby and Burton.

The following day Jun Terre, 52, a health care assistant at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury died.

Both had been tested positive for Covid-19.

Official figures indicate that around 18,500 Filipinos worked in the NHS in England as of March 2019, roughly 1.5% of an estimated 1.2 million total workforce.

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