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Professor dies from COVID after collapsing during Zoom lesson

A professor at an Argentinian university who was battling coronavirus was found dead after collapsing while teaching a class of about 40 students on Zoom last week.Paola De Simone, 46, had been sick with COVID-19 for four weeks. She was a professor of government and international relations and had worked at the Universidad Argentina de…

A professor at an Argentinian university who was battling coronavirus was found dead after collapsing while teaching a class of about 40 students on Zoom last week.

Paola De Simone, 46, had been sick with COVID-19 for four weeks. She was a professor of government and international relations and had worked at the Universidad Argentina de la Empresa (UADE) for 15 years.

She was teaching a class on Wednesday last week when she began to deteriorate, before saying to her students: “I can’t.”

“Do you want to give us your address and we can call the ambulance or something?” one student asked in a video seen by Argentine media.

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Her husband, a doctor, reportedly arrived home later to find her dead, after she had previously reported how exhausted he was from working during the coronavirus pandemic.

She reportedly wrote on Twitter: “I have been (sick) more than four weeks, and the symptoms do not go away.”

She added: “My husband is exhausted from working so much at the moment.”

Following her death, the UADE described her as a “passionate and dedicated teacher” and a “great” person.

A recording of the Zoom class was later posted online, attracting criticism on social media with people saying it was in bad taste.

Some have directed their criticism at the university.

“As a former student and graduate of UADE I would love to read that they are taking action on the matter about the dissemination of the video of the class where the teacher breaks down,” one person wrote under the UADE statement on Facebook.

“Beyond the subject of the video, which is what I talk about the most, are they going to take care of the fact that they let a teacher with positive COVID for a month teach and not rest?” Another wrote.

“I did not know her but I am a teacher and as a colleague I hope they put their cards on the table, expel the person who exposed the video and lose everything approved so far,” wrote another.

“Nobody deserves to die like this, but less to have their death mocked!”

Argentina currently has more than 470,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 9800 deaths.

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