Prince Philip thanks key workers amid coronavirus pandemic

The Duke of Edinburgh has thanked key workers across the UK for their contributions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

FILE: Britain's Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh waits for the carriage carrying Princess Eugenie of York and her husband Jack Brooksbank to pass at the start of the procession after their wedding ceremony at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on 12 October 2018. Picture: AFP

LONDON - Prince Philip has heaped praise on key workers for their contributions to keeping the UK going amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Duke of Edinburgh has thanked key workers across the UK for their contributions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

As well as NHS workers, Prince Philip has spoken out to praise everyone helping the country during the global health crisis, including those working in the postal and delivery and waste disposal services.

In a statement, he said: "I wanted to recognise the vital and urgent work being done by so many to tackle the pandemic; by those in the medical and scientific professions, at universities and research institutions, all united in working to protect us from COVID-19.

"On behalf of those of us who remain safe and at home, I also wanted to thank all key workers who ensure the infrastructure of our life continues; the staff and volunteers working on food production and distribution, those keeping postal and delivery services going, and those ensuring the rubbish continues to be collected."

The 98-year-old British royal - who made the rare statement via the Royal Family's social media channels - has been staying with Queen Elizabeth II at Windsor Castle, where the couple's household has been reduced to increase safety.

His comments come after their son Prince Charles, 71, fell ill with "mild symptoms" of the respiratory disease last month.

Prince William recently admitted he was little worried about his dad battling the illness, but was confident the heir-to-the-throne would pull through.

He said: "At first I was quite concerned - he fits the profile of somebody, at the age he is, who is fairly risky. I was a little bit worried, but I thought if anybody is going to beat this, it's going to be him."