Police officer tells James O'Brien she feels "guilty" self-isolating over illness

17 March 2020, 14:46 | Updated: 17 March 2020, 14:47

This is the moving moment a police officer who is self-isolating opened up to James O'Brien about how "incredibly guilty" she feels not being on duty - and called for the government to test emergency response teams.

This caller Susan is a police officer and as of this morning she had to go into self-isolation as she's experiencing bad coughs as well as the symptoms of a normal cold.

"Without public sector workers being tested for something like this we are automatically told to go into a period of isolation. But what if this is just a cold and I've then got just as much chance of getting coronavirus three months down the line...and then having to take more time off?" Susan said.

She reflected that this was in a time when we are "desperately trying to keep our emergency services going."

"I know the NHS is under such strain at the moment but if there was a way we could be tested to see whether or not we haven't got it...then we could go back to work and fulfil our duties. I'm feeling incredibly guilty that I'm not at work today."

Boris Johnson is hosting a now daily coronavirus public briefing
Boris Johnson is hosting a now daily coronavirus public briefing. Picture: PA

James asked why she feels guilty and she replied,"Because at a time of crisis you should be out there on the front line."

James comforted her, "Don't feel guilty. You do more on a daily shift than most of us do in our lifetimes to protect the public, give yourself a break."

She said it was "really difficult" to do so and emphasised that the government should enable those working in the emergency services to be tested, and not just those that are highly symptomatic.

"I don't know what the reasons are for not doing it...it doesn't make sense," James said, "would you promise me you'll be a bit kinder to yourself?

"We want you fit and dander, you're no use to us poorly, Susan," he said, "It's not your fault you can't get the test that you want."