A man who worked closely with asbestos throughout his working life was more susceptible to the COVID-19 pneumonia that was partially responsible for killing him, an inquest heard.

Terence Mursell, who died at the end of April, died from COVID-19 pneumonia and asbestosis, having contracted the virus at The Adelaide home in Ryde, due to his weakened lungs.

The retired heating and plumbing engineer worked extensively with asbestos and was found to have pleural plaques in his lungs in 2018.

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His wife, Barbara told the IW Coroners’ Court last Friday (4th September) the couple were not told about the plaques until December 2019.

Mr Mursell was becoming increasingly unwell, having also been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and was referred to the palliative care team but in February earlier this year, following a history of falls and increased confusion, he was admitted to St Mary’s Hospital.

He was discharged to The Adelaide in Ryde, where he stayed for 5 weeks.

During that time, Mr Mursell developed symptoms of COVID-19, a high temperature and cough, and tested positive for the virus.

Being transferred back to hospital for treatment in the COVID wards, Mrs Mursell was able to visit him, wearing full PPE.

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Isle of Wight Coroner, Caroline Sumeray, said:

“Asbestosis is clearly a condition which weakens the lungs and he was particularly susceptible in that situation to COVID-19 pneumonia, the pandemic we are currently in the midst off.

“He succumbed to that as a consequence of his previous industrial exposure to asbestos.

“My condolences go to his family.”

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Mr Mursell died on 29th April at St Mary’s Hospital.

The Isle of Wight Council, which runs The Adelaide, declined to comment.

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1 year ago

I spent my life in the same industry and my lungs are shot! I have the same fears. condolences to his family.


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