politics

'My Covid hospital stay haunts me a year on – that's why No10 parties make my blood boil'


Writing for the Mirror, shadow Cabinet minister Jo Stevens opens up about the most frightening week of her life, how she has still not fully recovered from Covid, and her anger at claims No10 staff broke the rules

Shadow Cabinet minister Jo Stevens has opened up about the most frightening week of her life
Shadow Cabinet minister Jo Stevens has opened up about the most frightening week of her life

“We cannot continue with Christmas as planned.”

That was Boris Johnson speaking at a press conference to the nation in December last year.

I didn’t have the Christmas I planned last year.

I became ill with Covid on Christmas Eve, my condition deteriorated badly and I was rushed to hospital where I spent the most frightening week of my life wondering whether I would ever come home.

A year on, I still haven’t fully recovered and my disturbing dreams about that time in hospital are as vivid as ever.

But I was one of the lucky ones. For so many families, nearly 170,000 of them, their loved ones weren’t so lucky and haven’t come home.







Jo Stevens writes for the Mirror: “A year on, I still haven’t fully recovered and my disturbing dreams about that time in hospital are as vivid as ever”
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Image:

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So when I read in the Mirror that parties were held in No10 in the run up to Christmas, it made my blood boil.

But that’s nothing compared with how so many bereaved families and friends must feel.

Talk about adding insult to injury.

People died alone, or amongst strangers.

Wives, husbands, partners, children – prevented from holding the hand of their loved one in their last moments.

People up and down the country unable to be together because Boris Johnson told them they couldn’t.

My family prevented from seeing me in hospital just like the families of every other patient.

We followed the rules.

It was painful and sad and for many it was desperately lonely, but we did it because we knew it would help keep people safe.

But Boris Johnson doesn’t believe rules apply to him.

He’s spent his entire life breaking them.

Remember Dominic Cummings and Matt Hancock?

The only rule that Boris Johnson and his mates follow is that the rules don’t apply to them.

We’ve all been through a horrible time and it’s not over yet.

But this year my wish is for a quiet Christmas at home with my family after my nightmare last year – and I’ll be thinking of those who didn’t come home from hospital.

Jo Stevens is the Shadow Welsh Secretary.

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