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'Neighbours' Kym Valentine 'takes sick leave'

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Libby Kennedy-Fitzgerald in Neighbours

© Channel 5

Kym Valentine has taken indefinite leave from Neighbours.

The actress is said to be recovering from a depressive illness following a series of health issues.

Executive producer Susan Bower explained that the soap star has the full support of the production team.

She said: "Kym is a much-loved member of the Ramsay St family and her health is our paramount concern.

"We wish her all the best with her recovery and we'll continue to provide support where appropriate."

Valentine, who plays Libby Kennedy in the drama, came down with pneumonia in 2008 and a collapsed lung on a flight from the US to Melbourne.

After taking a month off, she returned to the show in July last year but was admitted to hospital with a blood clot in her lungs. In December she checked herself into a private hospital suffering from exhaustion.

Valentine returned to Neighbours in January but has had health problems once again.

The character of Libby has been written out of the show in what a source described as a "nice and neat way".

The insider explained: "It has been done so when she is ready to return she can walk straight back into the show." Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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