Covid-19: ‘Greatly respected’ Indian doctor dies in UK
Jitendra Kumar Rathod, who gained medical qualifications from Bombay University in 1977, moved to the UK and worked for years in the National Health Service (NHS), has died after being infected by coronavirus, officials in Wales said on Monday night.
The Cardiff and Vale University Health Board said: “It is with profound sadness that we must inform you that Mr Jitendra Rathod, Associate Specialist in Cardio-thoracic Surgery at the University Hospital of Wales, has passed away”.
Indian doctors and nurses are among frontline NHS staff dealing with thousands of patients in hospitals across the UK. Doctors who qualified in India are the second largest group employed in the NHS, after those qualifying in the UK.
The board added: “He died early this morning on our General Intensive Care unit after testing positive for Covid-19. Jitu had worked in the Department of Cardio-thoracic Surgery since the mid-1990s and came back to UHW in 2006 after a brief stint abroad”.
“He was an incredibly dedicated surgeon who cared deeply for his patients. He was well-liked and greatly respected by one and all. He was a very compassionate and a wonderful human being. His commitment to the specialty was exemplary,” the board said in a tribute.
Rathod is survived by his wife and two sons.
The number of people dying of coronavirus in the UK rose on Monday to 5,373, most likely including many of Indian origin from the 1.5 million strong Indian community. The NHS does not disclose the ethnicity of the dead.