Coronavirus: Cleaner makes 4,500-mile trip to return to work

Image source, NHS
Image caption,
Purna Ghale was caught up in strict lockdown measures in Nepal but has since returned to London

A cleaner has completed his 4,500-mile trip from Nepal to north-west London to return to work in hospital to help against the coronavirus outbreak.

Purna Ghale, from Edgware, had been in Kathmandu visiting family when his return flight was cancelled.

The 43-year-old had to be repatriated by the government and is now back at work at Northwick Park Hospital, in Harrow.

Mr Ghale said he wanted "to do his bit like everyone else".

He has worked at Northwick Park for 16 years and Mr Ghale described being abroad when the Nepalese capital went into lockdown in March.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Northwick Park Hospital is part of the London North West University Trust which has seen over 300 deaths linked to Covid-19

"There were only a handful of reported cases in Kathmandu but the lockdown is very strict in Nepal," he said.

"The police and army patrol the streets and very few people are allowed outside."

The married father-of two said he was relieved to get back his family in London.

Northwick Park is one of two hospitals to have declared a critical incident during the coronavirus outbreak.

On 20 March a surge in the number of patients being treated for Covid-19 meant the hospital had run out of intensive care beds and had to seek help from nearby hospitals.

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