NHS Lanarkshire mourns one of its own as healthcare support worker passes away from virus

Tributes have poured in for a ‘selfless and bright’ healthcare support worker who passed away from COVID-19 on Monday.

Colleagues have told how mum-of-two Kirsty Jones, 41, was ‘loved by both patients and relatives’ in her 24 year career with NHS Lanarkshire.

Kirsty’s husband, Nigel, summed up the sentiment expressed by many of her friends, family and colleagues.

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He said: “Kirsty devoted her life to caring for others.

“She was a wonderful wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend and nurse.

“Kirsty was larger than life itself and was a constant source of happiness for all who were around her. She was so proud of her two sons, Sam, 14, and Finlay, 4, and loved them both very, very much.

“Kirsty will be greatly missed by all who knew her. A void has opened in our hearts that will never be filled.”

Nigel added: “We will miss you every day, Kirsty, but be sure that we will carry all the wonderful memories we made together forever in our hearts.

“We will never forget you, you really were so special to us all and we will love you forever.”

Kirsty had recently taken up a position in one of Lanarkshire’s Assessment Centres, based in Airdrie Health Centre, to help in the frontline response against the pandemic.

Before the emergency response, she had worked in the community, providing support to older people. Allison Campbell, District Nurse Team Leader of Bellshill locality, said: “Kirsty had joined our team from over two decades working in a hospital setting so there was some adjustment to working in the community.

“But she made that transition effortlessly, with a smile on her face. Her focus was always on providing care for patients and that’s what drove her.”

Janice Miles, Senior Nurse for Older People at University Hospital Wishaw, where Kirsty had spent the majority of her working days, said her loss was being felt profoundly among her former colleagues.

“Kirsty joined as a clinical support worker straight from school at the age of 17,” Janice explained.

“She was always happy, bright and hard working.

“She was known and loved by both patients and relatives due to her bubbly character, she was full of fun but was professional at all times. She had a larger than life character and will be sadly, sadly missed by everyone.”

Calum Campbell, chief executive of NHS Lanarkshire, said: “Everyone who has worked with Kirsty over her career can attest to her professionalism, compassion and commitment. She will be very greatly and sorely missed.

“Our thoughts and condolences are with Kirsty’s family and friends, as well as everyone who is grieving a loved one in these incredibly difficult times.”