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'Don't think this won't touch you': COVID-19 sufferer, 40, makes distancing plea from hospital bed

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'Don't think this won't touch you': COVID-19 sufferer, 40, makes distancing plea from hospital bed
Copyright  Mark McClurg
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A man who is in intensive care with COVID-19 has made a plea for people to adhere to social distancing rules.

Mark McClurg, a 40-year-old father and pastor from Northern Ireland, has spent the last week in intensive care.

"Coronavirus wants to kill you," he said in a video posted on Twitter, calling it both "deadly" and "dangerous".

"It wants to take all of the life out of your lungs so that you can't even breathe".

"Don't think this won't touch you," he warned. "If you get coronavirus and you have to go into the ICU, that means you're going to struggle to breathe".

"I am grateful that I am alive today," he said, thanking both his wife and the National Health Service (NHS).

"Night and day, 24/7 they have saved my life. All the doctors and nurses, I don't know what to say, but I love you".

As the cases continue to climb in Northern Ireland, he also called on people to continue social distancing.

"We must protect the heart and soul of Northern Ireland at this moment - our NHS staff. They need us. I've seen their faces, I've spoken to them. Some of them have come to terms that they are going to get coronavirus. Let that sink in. Do your part, stay at home".

"Just because we are social distancing doesn't mean we can't pick up the phone and phone our loved ones and phone our friends and neighbours.

"But be wise, be kind, love and protect the NHS."