Aug 14th 2020

Reunited in time for their anniversary, the couple separated for months by COVID-19

A couple from Great Barr got to celebrate their anniversary back in each other’s company, after the wife returned home following months of treatment for COVID-19 at a West Midlands healthcare Trust.

A tearful Hanifabibi Shaikh left Birmingham City Hospital to applause, as staff formed a socially distanced guard of honour to mark the end to a long period of treatment. Treatment which began when Hanifabibi fell seriously ill to the Coronavirus back in March, requiring a spell on the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit before beginning a slow recovery on City’s D47 Rehabilitation Unit.

Now in August, although her journey is not yet over, Hanifabibi is recovered enough to go home to finish her recuperation at home in the company of her loving husband Abdul.

The Shaikh family had been in regular contact with Sandwell and West Birmingham staff during Hanifabibi’s treatment and had developed a special relationship with those helping her. Even presenting the ward staff with a special book, full of messages of thanks from relatives far and wide.

Staff in return presented Hanifabibi with two cards – one a best wishes card, but another for the couple’s wedding anniversary which they were delighted to be able to spend together. At the same time others caught up with family news, expressing sadness they would miss their regular updates.

Hanifabibi Shaikh:  “It’s a very special day for me today. I’m going home after coming here in March but as happy as I am going home I’m going to miss all the friends I’ve made on my stay at D47. Although they are my health carers, my nurses, they all took me as friends, they’ve all given me such time – from ITU who knew they could save me and give me a second chance at life, to the respiratory team, and now here on D47. I cannot find sufficient words to express what I feel about them all – I thank the Lord for giving me a second chance, but so many people have played a part in it.”

Memory Seka, Senior Sister – D47 Rehabilitation Unit: “We’re both sad and happy to see Hanifabibi leave after so long needing treatment. It’s heartwarming to see her reunited with Abdul and we all wish her the very best in her continued recovery. I’m very proud of all the staff on D47 for all they have done to support Hanifabibi and her family while she has been under our care. They really have maintained and upheld the care promises set out by our Trust.”


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