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The 'selfless' doctor who always put others first

Dr Syed Waqqar Ali, an 'outstanding doctor', was the eighth health worker in Ireland to die of Covid-19, writes Maeve Sheehan

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Dr Syed Waqqar Ali died at the age of 59. Photo: Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri/PA Wire

Dr Syed Waqqar Ali died at the age of 59. Photo: Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri/PA Wire

PA

Dr Syed Waqqar Ali died at the age of 59. Photo: Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri/PA Wire

Late one evening, a woman walked in off the street to Beaumont Hospital's emergency department and was fortunate to be treated by Dr Syed Waqqar Ali. She was homeless and she had no money, she told the doctor. She said she had been deserted by her family.

"It was cold and wet and she wasn't known to staff as attending before, on many occasions. After treating her, he gave her a small amount of money for herself. He felt sorry for her, given her young age and the fact that she had no family at home. Family was important to him," according to a registrar at the hospital.

Dr Ali was the eighth health worker to die of Covid-19 in Ireland, a gentle and wise presence in the emergency departments at several hospitals where he worked as a locum in emergency.