Professor Robert Winston gives tragic account of wife’s last moments as 999 crew tried to save her

‘They didn’t want to give up… but I said it’s not working. She’s dead’: Professor Robert Winston gives tragic account of wife’s last moments as 999 crew tried to save her – and how grief has left him wondering if ‘life is worth continuing’

Professor Robert Winston has given a tragic account of his wife’s final moments when a 999 crew tried to save her – and how grief has left him wondering ‘if life is worth continuing’. 

In a new episode of the podcast Crisis What Crisis? with host Andy Coulson, he detailed how his other half, Lira, died in his arms while he battled to convince an operator on the phone to send an ambulance. 

During the episode, the scientist, author and broadcaster explained: ‘When the ambulance arrived of course it was too late, but it probably would have been anyway.

‘There was a lot of COVID going around and it took I think about 18 minutes which was just a bit too long, really. So when the paramedics came, they were over-anxious and they actually kept going for far too long. 

Professor Robert Winston (pictured) has given a tragic account of his wife’s final moments when a 999 crew tried to save her – and how grief has left him wondering ‘if life is worth continuing’

In a new episode of the podcast Crisis What Crisis? with host Andy Coulson (pictured), Mr Winston detailed how his other half, Lira, died in his arms while he battled to convince an operator on the phone to send an ambulance.

In a new episode of the podcast Crisis What Crisis? with host Andy Coulson (pictured), Mr Winston detailed how his other half, Lira, died in his arms while he battled to convince an operator on the phone to send an ambulance.

‘They were really not prepared to give up, they didn’t want to give up. Eventually I had to tell them, ”Look, you’ve done all you could possibly do. You’ve put up a drip, you’ve cardioverted her, it’s not working, and I totally accept that she’s dead.”’

Following the tragic incident, he explained how he has since struggled with grief, revealing: ‘You start wondering if your own life is worth continuing. It’s obvious that you think about that. 

‘But what do you learn? I don’t know. I think people learn different things and people react to grief very differently.’

It comes just after new ambulance strikes were announced for February and March, which will see them walking out four times.

The next strike is happening next Monday, on January 23.  

During the podcast, Mr Winston also discussed the NHS, saying ‘most people in the NHS know it could be so much better’. 

He added: ‘We didn’t invent the health service … but it’s there and we’ve got to find some way of making it work. 

‘The thing is to say, look, this is GDP and this is how much we can afford to spend on health. 

‘There’s going to be a gap. How do we fund that gap and what do we do about it?’

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