Jo Whiley reveals sister Frances is 'fighting for her life' amid COVID-19 battle

BBC Radio 2 DJ Jo Whiley on a red carpet

BBC Radio 2 DJ, Jo Whiley, says it's been the "worst week of our lives" as her sister, Frances - who has learning disabilities - is fighting for her life after contracting covid-19.

Jo, 55, appeared on The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday morning - just days after pulling out of her BBC Radio 2 presenting duties - and revealed her sister, Frances had to be "restrained" in hospital as she could not tolerate being given oxygen.

Thankfully, due to her disabilities, Jo - who recently opened up about the menopause - explained that her parents are allowed to be with Frances to help with her care, following a turbulent few days in hospital.

"People couldn’t cope with Frances, when she was admitted to hospital she was so terrified that she rampaged through the hospital and people couldn’t contain her," Jo admitted.

“Security guards had to be involved and they had to restrain her and the fact my mum was there and to talk her down and be able to give her oxygen was crucial so my mum and dad are amazing people, they are very strong and focused on getting her better but they’re pretty done in and anxious.”

Updating her worried fans, Jo said it has been a rollercoaster few days, with her family have gone from talking palliative, end of life care, to Frances showing signs of improving.

A photo posted by on

On how Frances is doing, Jo said, “I don’t know this morning so I’m slightly anxious, I’ve been trying to call my mum and I haven’t heard anything so waking up to having no news is a scary thing.

“It’s been the worst week of our lives without a shadow of a doubt. 24 hours ago we were talking palliative care and yesterday she rallied round and we are seeing her oxygen levels rise.

“At the moment, we’ve got hope. 24 hours ago we didn’t have any hope at all. She is an amazing fighter. She always has been a fighter and I’m just hoping her spirit gets her through."

In a cruel twist, Jo revealed Frances was finally called in for her covid-19 vaccine last night - but it could be too late.

"She actually got called in for her vaccine last night but it’s too late, she’s fighting for her life in hospitable, it couldn’t be crueller.”

Sending love and best wishes!

Celebrity writer

Georgia is a Celebrity and Royal Writer working across GoodTo and Woman & Home, and the Director and Founder of communications company Farq Media. Prior to this she was Online Editor at New! Magazine – managing all of their digital content and social media accounts. Where she interviewed all of the hottest reality TV stars and spent far too much time commuting to London. She trained at Nottingham Trent University – where she achieved First Class Honours in Print Journalism whilst juggling copious amounts of work experience, freelance writing, blogging and having far too much fun with the dance society.