On Monday a 36-year-old beloved Brooklyn principal lost her life due to coronavirus complications, now less than a week later another harrowing incident across the water in London mirrors the real-life tragedy of the dangers of coronavirus.
Kayla Williams, a 36-year-old Black woman and mother of three from the Peckingham neighborhood located in London, died on March 21, one day after paramedics were called to her home by her husband, Fabian, 49.
When Fabian dialed 999 on Friday, Kayla was experiencing symptoms specific to the coronavirus including a cough, a high fever, tightness in her chest and stomach pains, The Guardian reports.
“I called 999 because my wife was breathless, she was vomiting and she had pains in her stomach,” he told the outlet. “As I was talking to them she was getting worse and they told me to put her on the floor and to make her body flat.”
A report of the paramedic’s visit show they arrived around 8:32 a.m. and suspected that Kayla was suffering from symptoms related to the coronavirus.
“When the paramedic arrived at 8.32am she carried out some tests, Williams continued. “She told me the hospital won’t take her, she is not a priority. She did not stay very long and she went outside to write her report and posted it through the door.”
Fabian continued, explaining that the paramedic finished her written report and exited their home. However, Kayla continued to worsen into the next day. After running his wife a bath on Saturday morning, feeding her some soup and taking a short nap, Fabian entered the living room and found his wife slumped over.
“She was already dead,” he said. He immediately rushed to lay her flat on the ground as instructed and called 999 for assistance.
“I put her on the ground – because that is what they had told me to do before – and I rang 999 again and they told me to put my hand on her chest and pump her chest.”
Fabian said an ambulance and three cars soon arrived but first responders were not successful in reviving her. He noted the behavior of the police officers who refused to enter when he invited them into his home. A mortician who arrived to retrieve his wife’s body along with accompanied officers were suited in full hazmat gear from head to toe.
“This is when I thought; ‘What’s going on? This is not right,’” he said.
Fabian also observed that the mortician wrapped his wife’s face with a covering, before placing her in a body bag.
“I have heard nothing since,” he continued. “They have left me here and said I must isolate. They haven’t told me anything else. I am a diabetic. I take insulin. All I know is I am supposed to isolate. No one has mentioned her body being tested or anything.”
Since that time Fabian claims he has received no directives regarding whether or not he and his family need to isolate or be tested. However, documents obtained from the ambulance report on Friday notes Kayla was suffering from, “?Cov 19″ and listed her symptoms as “non-productive cough … headache … chest pains all over.” It also apparently lists preventive measures such as taking “antipyretics” and increasing fluids. The report also says the family was advised to isolate.
In response London’s ambulance said, “We were called at 8.32am on Friday 20 March to reports of a person unwell at an address in Peckham. Our clinicians treated a patient and advised them to call back if their condition changed. We were called the following day at 3.24pm and sent a number of resources, with our first medics arriving in under seven minutes. Sadly, the patient had died. Our sympathy is with the family at this time. We are working incredibly hard in these unprecedented times to look after Londoners.”
The Williams’ story stokes fears regarding health access and response for underserved communities as the virus penetrates all parts of the globe.