BBC presenter George Alagiah, 64, has beaten coronavirus two weeks after announcing he was self isolating due to his chemotherapy.
The BBC News at Six presenter is undergoing treatment for bowel cancer. He was diagnosed in 2014 and again in 2017.
Appearing on BBC News this evening, Mr Alagiah said his cancer diagnoses gave him ‘an edge’ in overcoming his ‘mild dose’ of the bug, which has killed 1,789 people in the UK alone.
Earlier this month he decided to stay away from the newsroom amid the coronavirus crisis ‘on the balance of risks’, and added that he was ‘absolutely gutted’.
BBC presenter George Alagiah, 64, has tested positive for coronavirus two weeks after announcing he was self isolating
Speaking on BBC News today, Mr Alagiah said: ‘I don’t want to trivialise because I seem to have had a mild dose, but actually, the very fact that we [cancer patients] are living with cancer I think gives us an edge.
‘We’ve confronted those difficult, dark moments in our life.
‘And in some ways, I think that we, those of us living with cancer, are stronger because we kind of know what it is like to go into something where the outcomes are uncertain.
‘And I certainly feel that having had that experience, in my case six years as a cancer patient, I went into this feeling actually quite strong, if I can live with cancer, I can certainly live with Covid-19.’
Speaking on BBC News today, Mr Alagiah said: ‘I don’t want to trivialise because I seem to have had a mild dose, but actually, the very fact that we [cancer patients] are living with cancer I think gives us an edge’
He has decided to self-isolate because of the risk the coronavirus poses to people with underlying health issues
Mr Alagiah’s wife Fran also experienced coronavirus symptoms.
He said: ‘She’s been through it a little bit and it’s kind of lasted a bit longer. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason for how this plays out in individuals.
‘I don’t want to make light of it, because right now […] you and I both know there are people out there who are really finding this tricky, families going through a very anxious time.’
In a tweet earlier this month, he said: ‘Absolutely gutted. After talking to colleagues and doctors I’ve decided to stay away from the newsroom.
Statistics released this morning revealed basic details about the first 108 people in Britain to have COVID-19 mentioned on their death certificate. Elderly people and men were the worst affected, the data showed
By March 20, the coronavirus had become a contributing factor or direct cause in one in every 100 deaths in the UK, according to the latest date from the Office for National Statistics
‘I’m on a few weeks cancer treatment break at the moment but, on a balance of risks, we all decided I must heed the advice for those with underlying health issues.’
Mr Alagiah underwent 17 rounds of chemotherapy to treat advanced bowel cancer in 2014 before returning to presenting duties in 2015.
In January 2018, he revealed that the cancer had returned.
Today, a record-breaking 381 coronavirus deaths and 3,009 cases were declared in the UK, which is now officially Britain’s darkest day so far in the ever-worsening crisis.
Some 1,789 patients who tested positive for COVID-19 have now died, while the total infection toll has surpassed 25,000 – but the true size of the outbreak remains a mystery.
The number of new deaths recorded today is twice as high as the 180 victims recorded yesterday but there was only a 14 per cent jump in daily cases – up from 2,619.