Thursday, May 30, 2024

Queen Elizabeth speaks of being left exhausted by COVID-19

Queen Elizabeth II

London, April 11: In the first reference to her COVID-19 recovery, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II has spoken about being left very tired and exhausted after she tested positive for the coronavirus in February.
The 95-year-old monarch was speaking during a virtual launch of a new COVID-19 ward named after her at an east London hospital last week.
In the footage released on Monday, she officially opened the Queen Elizabeth Unit at Royal London hospital in Whitechapel and listened to the stories of medical staff, patients and workers who had already benefited from the facility during the pandemic.
Speaking to Asef Hussain, a former COVID-19 patient, and his wife, Shamina, the Queen said about the virus: It does leave one very tired and exhausted, doesn’t it? This horrible pandemic. It’s not a nice result.
The monarch, who had suffered from “mild cold-like symptoms” as revealed by Buckingham Palace at the time, acknowledged the difficulty COVID-19 patients had not being able to see their families and friends while they were in hospital.
Of course, not being able to see your relatives was very hard, she said.
The new 155-bed unit was built in just five weeks to meet the excess demand caused by the pandemic.
Speaking to construction workers who had worked at a record pace to build the unit, the Queen said: It is very interesting, isn’t it, when there is some very vital thing, how everybody works together and pulls together marvellous, isn’t it?
The team spoke of being inspired by the war-time spirit, dubbed Dunkirk spirit after the British public’s collective efforts during the Second World War, to which the monarch added: Thank goodness it still exists.
The Queen, who has been cutting down her physical appearances at events due to age-related mobility issues, has been active with online events and ceremonies instead.
She was last seen in public to attend a memorial to her late husband, Prince Philip the Duke of Edinburgh, at Westminster Abbey last month.
In another break from royal tradition, she is set to skip her annual Easter time routine of distributing special coins on Maundy Service to be held on Thursday ahead of Easter Sunday this weekend.
The church service would have involved the Queen handing out “Maundy money” to a line-up of recipients.
Her eldest son and heir, Prince Charles, will be taking her place at the service instead.
The annual service marks Maundy Thursday, which commemorates Jesus washing the feet of the apostles at the Last Supper.
The royal ceremony of awarding gifts on this day dates back to 600 AD.
The recipients are traditionally local elderly people, who are being recognised for their contribution to the community. (PTI)