Lily Chao (born 23 November 1988) is a registrar in emergency medicine who currently works in the emergency department of Holby City Hospital. She joined the department in 2013 as an F2, and became a registrar in 2015 following a successful exam result. Although she initially had trouble with adopting a more caring attitude when dealing with patients, with some help from the other staff she was able to improve her bedside manner.
Despite originally being disliked in the ED, she has since managed to develop friendships with other staff members, especially since her promotion to registrar in August 2015. She has had tough times whilst working in the ED including being involved in a minibus crash along with four other staff members, having a motorcycle accident due to Connie Beauchamp increasing the work hours, and the death of her father. Despite this, Lily has continued to work hard, determined to complete her five year plan to become a consultant.
Lily grew up with her parents Feng and Li Na Chao in a family where education was considered to be of great importance. Despite the fact she was the first of her family to go to university, her father would tell her that hard work and dedication was the key to success.
At some point after graduating, Lily devised a 5-year plan, consisting of her two years as a foundation doctor in an emergency department. Upon joining Holby ED, she quickly realised that she may have set her goals too high. She has origins from Hong Kong. Prior to joining the department, Lily completed a six month rotation in gerontology.
Time in the emergency department (2013-)
Lily Chao joined the emergency department in August 2013 in her second year of foundation training. Initially, she found it hard to fit in with the team, primarily due to the fact she was bossy, strict, and had complete disregard for her bedside manner when dealing with patients, something that Martin Ashford picked up on. Ash was one of the first staff members to have met Lily after he told her she couldn't park her motorcycle outside the ED, but she refused to move it. After first meeting Zoe, Lily told her and Ash that after completing her training and doing a couple of hospital jobs, she hoped to be living in the countryside with her future husband specialising in dermatology. Later in the month, Zoe gave Lily a stern talk after she refused to treat a patient whose politics she disagreed with.
Three weeks after her arrival, Lily accompanied Ash out to the scene of an incident at the docks where two teens had jumped into the water, one of whom was severely injured. Lily was amazed when she witnessed him save the drowning boy, and later reassured him when she realised that she's mistakenly accused him of being hesitant to perform a life-saving procedure. Ash was annoyed that Lily, a junior doctor, had dared appraise him and he verbally abused her in public, which left her mortified.
Towards the end of the month with no signs of her behaviour improving, she was paired up with Rita in an attempt to help her improve her bedside manner once and for all. When this failed to work, it became clear that Lily was only determined to progress her career, and had no time for going above and beyond with patients. Although Rita thought she'd made progress with Lily, they clashed over a patient's treatment just two weeks later, when Lily was keen to contact social services about a teenage girl. By the following week, the nurses were growing tired of Lily's method of work, especially when she failed to handle a mentally vulnerable patient correctly.
In November, Lily attempted to remove some broken wood from a patients leg which almost caused him to bleed to death. Although no serious harm was done, Ash was furious with Lily for ignoring his direct orders. In order to teach Lily a lesson, Ash restricted Lily to a series of minor cases the following week, although Zoe soon demanded that Lily be reinstated as a fully working doctor. Later in the shift, Lily suspected that a man who was admitted had been taking steroids, and voiced her concerns to Ash. Although the two disagreed about the patient's treatment, they eventually reached an understanding.
Later in November, she discharged a distressed patient without taking her mental state into consideration, although Jamie had concerns about the woman earlier. Lily did some research into the patient's notes, and the paramedics were able to rush her into the ED just in time. In December, Lily showed a different side to herself at the staff Christmas party, as she took to the stage to take part in some karaoke.
In January 2014, Lily was paired up with new registrar Ethan Hardy. Zoe asked Lily to teach him the ropes of the department, and they worked together in figuring out a patient's illness when she displayed unexplained symptoms. Lily was frustrated with Ethan when he displayed a distracted attitude, but she only learned later that his mother had died. In February, Ash's daughter Ella was spending the day in the department ofr work experience with Lily. However, Lily struggled to get her to do what she was told. At a Valentine's Day party the following week, Lily threw a drunken kiss at Ash. He rejected her advances, which resulted in her leaving the party early due to embarrassment. Ash was worried that things would be awkward between them the following week, but Lily showed up for work like nothing had happened.
By March, Lily had begun to show a softer side when she treated a woman admitted to the ED, after spending a day out with the paramedics. However, Ash had a harsh word with her after she failed to follow all of his instructions back in the ED. In anger, he told her that he put her errors down to stupidity, and even lied to her and said the patient she had been treating had died. As a result of this, Lily decided to file a formal complaint against him work workplace bullying. The following week, things were frosty between her and Ash after her complaint. Zoe was keen for them to sort it out internally and even asked Ash to apologise to her. However, Lily made it clear that she wished to go all the way. Two weeks later, a disciplinary hearing took place involving Lily, Ash and some of the hospital's board members, including Guy Self. Ash expressed genuine remorse for what he had done, and was issued with a formal written warning. Following the hearing, Lily made a request to stay on longer, with Ash backing her up.
Lily was keen to show the team that she was a changed doctor, but she struggled to change their opinions of her. In April, Lily rescued a young girl with ADHD from being hit by a lorry along a busy motorway after she went missing from the ED. After the shift, her efforts to turn over a new leaf proved to make making an impact when she was invited to the pub for drinks. However, Lily's treatment of a morbidly obese patient the following week left Rita furious. To make matters worse, Lily took credit for noticing that the patient had a heart condition, when actually it was Rita's discovery. Rita's frustration later got the better of her, and she confronted Lily in front of Zoe and Connie. Nevertheless, at the end of the shift, Connie offered to take over from Ash as Lily's mentor.
In May, Lily interfered with one of Cal's patients by sending them upstairs for a psychiatric review without consulting him first. However, Lily was later left even more embarrassed when it transpired that the patient had a brain tumour, which was causing her uncharacteristic behaviour. At the end of the shift, Cal made a move of Lily and they went on a night out together. Despite this, Lily remained unaware that Cal had made a bet with Fletch that he could sleep with her. Lily soon realised that Cal was using her when it turned out to be nothing more than a one-night-stand.
In June, Cal asked Lily out again, purely to get in the way of Ethan's feelings for her. However, Lily later overheard Cal badmouthing her to Fletch, saying that she was easy to get, which left her heartbroken and angry. She confided in Ethan about what Cal had said, which resulted in Ethan punching Cal outside the ED. Lily was furious with both of them for making her private life everyone's knowledge. However, she soon softened to Ethan when he apologised, although a reconciliation with Cal was still a long way off. In August, Lily helped to expose Cal for stealing Ethan's ideas on cost cutting and blood transfusions.
In October, Lily was in a minubus with several other members of staff when it was hit by a rogue car and tipped over. Lily complained of severe arm pain at the scene, and became frantic about Ethan's condition when he was unresponsive. Despite the paramedics concerns at the scene due to her pain, Robyn later told her at the ED that her injuries were low priority. Lily attended Jeff's funeral the following week after his death at the scene of the minubus crash.
In March when Connie greatly increased the training doctors' workloads, Lily worked the hardest, losing sleep in her efforts to impress Connie. As a result of this, Lily fainted at work whilst treating a patient, but Connie ignored the warning signs. Dylan eventually persuaded Lily to go home, but against his judgement she decided to make her own way on her motorcycle scooter. On her way home exhausted, Lily accidentally hit a teenage girl with her motorcycle, who had walked out into the road. Although Lily was okay, the girl was left with a dislocated shoulder and a leg injury, and her father threatened to sue. The girl also admitted that she had purposely stepped out in the road, therefore getting Lily off the hook. However, Lily had already attributed the accident to her own carelessness, and left Connie her letter of resignation. Connie initially refused to take responsibility for Lily's exhaustion, but after a chat with Rita, Connie rejected her resignation. She told Lily that she was a good doctor, and instructed her to take a couple of days off work to rest.
In May, Lily connected with a Chinese mother who wanted to die in order to give her daughter a better life. Lily helped her realise the other options, and also helped reconnect the mother with her daughter. Following the emotional shift, Lily was left wondering about the relevance of her ambitious five-year plan. In July, Lily started to look at Ethan in a different light, and considered him the perfect match for her. Later in the month, Lily finally plucked up the courage to ask Ethan out on a date. However, they failed to make it to the restaurant after they clashed about a patient's welfare during the shift.
In August, Ethan asked Cal and Lily for advice on his feelings for Honey. He eventually listened to Lily, who advised him to focus on his FCEM exams instead of starting a relationship. However, he didn't realise that Lily only said this because she wanted him to herself. The following week, Ethan realised that he needed to pursue his feelings for Honey, and he let Lily down gently. Later in the month, Lily passed her test in order to become a registrar, while her friends Cal and Ethan didn't pass their's to become consultants. Upon telling her father, he wasn't as pleased as she had thought he would be, which lead her to start a quest for approval at work by turning to Connie, who lets her run the ED for the day. However, her friends and colleagues in the ED didn't approve of her new authoritarian attitude. The following day, Lily was tasked with treating Zoe after her and Max's wedding disaster.
In September 2015, Lily was paired up with new F2 doctor Alicia Munroe to be her mentor. Lily took the opportunity to assert her authority as a registrar, and even began advising Alicia based on her own choices. However, Lily soon became jealous when Alicia was praised by Connie and Jacob, and went out to the pub with everyone after work. The following week, Lily was furious with Alicia when she performed a risky procedure on Roy Ellisson, a patient during the terrorist takeover of the department. However, Lily was irritated that Connie wasn't bothered due to the fact the patient pulled through.
The following month, Lily was struggling to hide her dislike for Alicia, and it began to become noticeable to other members of staff. The following week, things only got worse for Lily when she received a phone-call from her mother, telling her that her father had died. Alicia soon noticed that she was upset, but Lily refused to open up to her. It was only at the end of the shift that Lily finally informed Connie of her loss. After the funeral the following week, Lily threw herself into work once again upon hearing that the ED was understaffed. She assured Connie that work would help take her mind off things, but when Lily ended up endangering a patient's life, Connie was forced to send her home. Lily later took her anger out on Alicia after she asked if she was okay. At this point, it was becoming evident to Louise that Lily was bullying Alicia.
Just a week after the funeral, Alicia was forced to fetch Connie after Lily made a mistake whilst realigning a patient's broken ankle bone. Lily soon became more jealous when it was Alicia's quick thinking that saved the patient. At the end of October, Connie encouraged Alicia to take her MCEM exams as soon as possible. The only issue was that she asked for a senior member of staff to also write a report on her, and it was Lily who took charge. During the shift, Alicia performed an unfamiliar procedure on a patient to relocate his shoulder which annoyed Lily. Towards the end of the shift, Connie asked Lily if everything was okay, at which point Lily told her that she thought Alicia was overconfident and not ready for the exams.
In November, Lily was furious with Alicia for misdiagnosing a patient and walking out of the ED in search of a relative. However, Lily was unaware that Alicia had saved a young man's life in the back of a van. In spite of Alicia, Lily reported the incident of the misdiagnosis to Connie and she launched an official investigation. Alicia quit later that day, claiming that she had been bullied out of her job by Lily. When Alicia's departure was announced to the staff the following week, Louise was soon to blame Lily for bullying her. Soon, several other members of staff picked up on this, including Ethan, who said that he couldn't take her side as what she had done was wrong. However, Lily found comfort in an unread email sent to her from her father before he died, in which he said he was proud of her.
In January 2016, Lily was shocked when she noticed Ethan looking online for jobs in Australia. She took matters into her own hands, and tried to persuade Connie not to accept Ethan's resignation. At the end of the day, Ethan decides to stay anyway. The following month, Lily was paired up with Iain as they attended a pride festival. It became clear to her that Iain was missing Dixie, but Lily surprised him by suggesting that they return to the event after their shift.
The following month, Lily grew concerned about Ethan's behaviour, but decided to go along with his 'be more Cal' plan. A few weeks later, Lily was on hand to help out when Jacob's fear of spiders got the better of him. In July, Rita once again helped Lily out with her bedside manner just as she had done three years before when they had first joined the department.
In August with Charlie's 30th anniversary approaching that evening, Lily was shocked to discover that Alicia had returned for a locum shift in the ED. Trying to put the past behind her, Lily made an extra effort to be nice to Alicia, something which didn't go unnoticed. When Alicia discovered that Lily had a phobia that was affecting her work, she was forced to perform an eye procedure. Later in the shift, Lily tried to strike up a friendly conversation with Alicia. Despite this, Alicia informed her that although she could get over the past, they were never going to be friends.
Later in the day, a grumpy elderly patient named Sally Hodge was admitted to the ED following a fall and Charlie and Lily began treating her. They initially concluded that she likely had a urinary tract infection, but later discovered that she had a lithopaedion as a result of an attempted abortion when she was a teenager. They sent her off for surgery, but not before she inadvertently ruined the surprise of the party for Charlie. Lily later joined the party at The Hope & Anchor and began updating Charlie on Sally's condition, but he was clearly preoccupied with his celebrations. Following the helicopter crash outside the ED, Lily was straight on the scene assisting with the other medical staff. She primarily took care of Iain and his leg injury as he was inside the helicopter, and was angry when he kept getting up to help in the fear that he would make his condition worse. Later in the day, Lily performed a head scan on Iain and found that there was no significant injury, and he was relieved to hear that Grace had also pulled through.
In September, Lily was treating an elderly couple in the ED and was shocked when the woman told her that she had been hit by one of the ambulance doors. Lily went down to the ambulance station to examine Iain as she believed that his injuries from the crash were still affecting him. It transpired that he had a perforated eardrum which was affecting his hearing, hence why he didn't hear the woman behind the door earlier in the day. She prescribed him some antibiotics and advised him to take some time off work which he later did.
Later in the month, the anniversary of her father's death arrived and Lily threw herself into work. She soon found herself working with a teenage girl who didn't want anything to do with her father and tried to persuade her to reconcile with him. However, when the father's condition worsened and his daughter became worried, Lily found it all too close to home and had to leave. To make things worse, Alicia had lied to Lily and told her that her birthday party was fancy dress in an attempt to deter her from coming. Lily borrowed the girl's pole dancing outfit to go to the party desperate to try something new. She was humiliated when she turned up in the outfit and found comfort in Iain.
In the following weeks, Alicia tried to contact Lily to apologise but she wasn't answering her phone. Towards the end of her shift one day, Lily turned up to work and let Alicia off the hook for what had happened. However, Alicia told Lily that Iain had stepped in to defend her and hinted that he may have feelings for her. In November, new F1 Seb's father Archie Grayling visited the ED whilst organising a brain operation for a teenage boy. Lily told Alicia that Archie was his type and Alicia asked him if he'd be interested in going out with her. He accepted and they went out together after their shifts. Two weeks later, Archie visited the ED whilst treating a young boy and arranged to meet up with Lily for a coffee. However, at the end of the shift Lily felt betrayed when he revealed himself as the undercover inspector for the ED that day.
At the staff Christmas party in December, Lily met Archie there, clearly having forgiven him for not telling her about being the inspector. They had a drink and she headed back to his house after. The following day on Christmas Eve, Lily gave Seb a gift for him to give to Archie. On New Year's Day, Lily saw Archie again and tried to organise another meetup. However, she turned to Iain after he rebuffed her.
In January, Iain's sister Gemma ended up in the ED after a fall. However, her carer from the young offenders' institute, Belle, had also been admitted and Lily soon made the connection when she saw the two talking. Lily later made a more alarming connection, as she noticed that the marks on Gemma's abdomen matched the shape of Belle's rings. Lily confronted Belle about the suspected abuse, but Belle soon revealed that Gemma was the one who assaulted her, hence why she was in the ED. Although Lily didn't want to upset Iain, she had no choice and had to ring the police on Belle, inadvertently handing Gemma over too. The following week Lily attempted to make amends with Iain, but he became frustrated again when she made a blunt remark about Gemma. The next day at Charlie and Duffy's wedding reception, Lily and Iain made up after she was able to get Iain a visiting order for Gemma.
Gemma didn't show up for the visit with Iain, but the next day Gemma and her mother Kim were involved in an accident. Kim was admitted after she fell down some stairs, but Lily later made a shocking diagnosis that she had cirrhosis of the liver. Lily attempted to support Iain through the stressful situation, but he was more concerned about looking after his family. After the shift, Iain offered to go for a drink with Lily but she rejected his offer claiming that she had work to do. Nevertheless, Gemma told Iain that it was obvious that they'd eventually get together.
In March, Lily attempted to tutor Gemma but Gemma's short temper soon put a stop to the lessons. Gemma was keen to learn, and persevered by showing Iain her spellings. Later in the day, a young girl was admitted and Lily was furious with Gemma when she began accusing her father of giving her drugs. However, both the man and Lily forgave her, and Lily even decided to give Gemma another chance at tuition. In April, Lily was apprehensive to follow through with Cal's proposed work-to-rule protest, after Sam began to make budget cuts. At the end of the shift, Lily had agreed to stay on and work overtime, which irritated Cal.
The following week, Lily continued to help out Sam in the ED, even though the other junior doctors had begun their strike outside the ED. However, Lily eventually realised that Sam had gone too far, especially when he ordered that an elderly patient whom she was treating would have to wait in the corridor. At the ambulance station, Iain realised that Gemma was the one who leaked the edited photos of Alicia the previous week. Although Gemma turned to Lily for support, Lily told her that she was on her own. However, Lily later agreed to meet with Gemma for support in the hospital's underground car park, something which angered Sam as Lily walked out on her shift. Lily arrived in the car park to find Gemma drunk and speeding around the car park in Iain's car. Lily attempted to get Gemma's attention, but as she stepped out from behind a parked van, Gemma accidentally hit Lily with the car, leaving her unconscious with blood pouring from her nose.
Throughout her time in the ED, Lily has been shown to have a romantic interest in co-worker Ethan Hardy. Despite this, many things have got in the way including studying for exams to become a registrar and the arrival and return of Honey Wright, the ED's coffee shop barista. She also had a brief fling with Cal in the summer of 2014.
Following the helicopter crash in August 2016, a potential romance blossomed between Lily and paramedic colleague Iain Dean, something which Alicia noticed. However, in November she began dating Archie Grayling. They broke up in January after he rebuffed her.
- Lily's mother owns a restaurant.
- She originally lived by her five-year plan, but after a couple of years in emergency medicine she decided that it was the speciality for her.
- Lily doesn't even like funfairs.
- Lily aspires to be like Connie one day.
Behind the scenes
Crystal Yu has portrayed Lily in Casualty since her arrival in August 2013. The character has been generally well received by critics favouring her sound medical skills and poor bedside manner. However, Duncan Lindsay writing for newspaper the Metro accused the character of being one-dimensional. Since her arrival, Lily has been a prominent character on the show through the 28th and 29th series. However, after the start of series 30, Lily's role in the show became less prominent throughout the series.
Crystal Yu attended the NTA Awards in January 2016 along with several other cast members. Casualty was nominated for the best drama, however it lost out to Downton Abbey.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 "Between the Cracks" (S28, E15)
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Bedside Manners" (S28, E01)
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 "Forsaking All Others - Part One" (S29, E45)
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 "Born Lucky" (S29, E05)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Toxic Relationships" (S29, E25)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 "Rules of Attraction" (S30, E07)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 "Strangers" (S30, E12)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 "Flutterby" (S30, E08)
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 "Best Served Cold" (S30, E10)
- ↑ "Once There Was a Way Home - Part Two" (S28, E03)
- ↑ "What You Believe" (S28, E04)
- ↑ "Waiting for a Star to Fall" (S28, E05)
- ↑ "Gloves Off" (S28, E07)
- ↑ "The Longest Day" (S28, E08)
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 "Rock and a Hard Place" (S28, E14)
- ↑ "Badge of Honour" (S28, E13)
- ↑ "What a Wonderful Life" (S28, E17)
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 "Once in a Lifetime" (S28, E24)
- ↑ "Bad Timing" (S28, E20)
- ↑ "Valentine's Day Mascara" (S28, E25)
- ↑ "The Great Pretender" (S28, E26)
- ↑ "The Last Chance Saloon" (S28, E27)
- ↑ "Survivor's Guilt" (S28, E28)
- ↑ "The Lies We Tell" (S28, E30)
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 "The Quiet Man" (S28, E32)
- ↑ "Valves to Vagrants" (S28, E31)
- ↑ "Only the Lonely" (S28, E33)
- ↑ "To Yourself Be True" (S28, E39)
- ↑ "The Dying Game" (S28, E40)
- ↑ "The Sicilian Defence" (S28, E47)
- ↑ "Falling - Part One" (S28, E42)
- ↑ "Falling - Part Two" (S28, E43)
- ↑ "A Life Less Lived" (S28, E48)
- ↑ "The Last Call" (S29, E06)
- ↑ "What a Difference a Day Makes" (S29, E19)
- ↑ "Excess Baggage" (S29, E24)
- ↑ "Against the Odds" (S29, E33)
- ↑ "Heart Over Head" (S29, E38)
- ↑ "The Next Step" (S29, E41)
- ↑ 40.0 40.1 "Dark Horses" (S29, E42)
- ↑ "The Long Haul" (S29, E43)
- ↑ "Forsaking All Others - Part Two" (S29, E46)
- ↑ "Cradle to the Grave" (S30, E04)
- ↑ "Belief" (S30, E05)
- ↑ "Sticks and Stones" (S20, E06)
- ↑ "One Shot" (S30, E09)
- ↑ 47.0 47.1 "Avoidable Harm" (S30, E11)
- ↑ "The Good Life" (S30, E21)
- ↑ "Fatal Error - Part Two" (S30, E26)
- ↑ "Hopelessly Addicted" (S30, E30)
- ↑ "Tangled Webs We Weave" (S30, E33)
- ↑ "The Fear" (S30, E42)
- ↑ Events partially took place in an episode that aired in July, but took place in-universe in August.
- ↑ "Sticks and Stones" (S30, E43)
- ↑ 55.0 55.1 "Too Old for This Shift" (S31, E01)
- ↑ "Strike Three" (S31, E03)
- ↑ "Party Pooper" (S31, E06)
- ↑ "All the Single Ladies" (S30, E06)
- ↑ 59.0 59.1 "Too Much Love Will Kill You" (S31, E07)
- ↑ 60.0 60.1 "Thirty Years" (S31, E11)
- ↑ "About My Mother" (S31, E12)
- ↑ "All I Want for Christmas is You" (S31, E14)
- ↑ "Bah Humbug" (S31, E15)
- ↑ 64.0 64.1 "What Lurks in the Heart" (S31, E17)
- ↑ 65.0 65.1 "Little Sister" (S31, E19)
- ↑ "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" (S31, E20)
- ↑ "The Stag, the Dog and the Sheep" (S31, E21)
- ↑ "Binge Britain" (S31, E23)
- ↑ "The Good Samaritan" (S31, E26)
- ↑ "Mobile" (S31, E27)
- ↑ "When the Whistle Blows" (S31, E31)
- ↑ "Reap the Whirlwind - Part One" (S31, E32)