Back from the brink

As some of our members are aware, Jeremy Keates, the This is Clapham BID Manager has not been at work since August after contracting invasive Strep A which resulted in multiple organ failure, which in turn caused pneumonia, septic shock, and toxic shock syndrome.

At the end of July having felt unwell during the day Jeremy’s wife called an ambulance as he was struggling to breathe with a high temperature and sickness. He was admitted to A&E and quickly put on oxygen to help with his breathing.

Unfortunately his health rapidly deteriorated thereafter. His lungs failed, his kidneys shut down and his heart was struggling as the infection overwhelmed his system. At this point he was given a 10% chance of survival and his family were asked to consent to the use of an ECMO machine, that would take over the function of his heart, increasing his chance of survival to 30%. 

Usually the ECMO would attach to a patient in theatre, but doctors determined that Jeremy was too sick to move and so it was installed ‘blind’ in Intensive Care, which would lead to complications further on down the line.

He was then rapidly transferred to the Royal Brompton Hospital, which specialises in treating heart and lungs and the use of ECMO machines. Only four hospitals in England have ECMO and we are lucky in London to have world class hospitals close by. Jeremy remained on ECMO for 8 days and remained sedated in ICU for a further seven days.  

Defying the odds Jeremy is now on a road to recovery, still in hospital four months later but soon to go to a specialist rehabilitation facility for intensive physiotherapy to help regain strength and mobility. With an infection this severe there have been some complications, but he is working hard to get stronger and back on his feet, to get home to his family and to get back to work! He is without doubt incredibly grateful to the NHS and its staff for saving his life.

The Board and team are in regular contact with Jeremy as he remains 100% committed to the BID and is passionate about its future. His knowledge, expertise and input is very much valued, particularly at this crucial time of the renewal ballot. Jeremy and his family would like to thank local businesses for the many messages of support he has received and is looking forward to the day he is back on the High Street in person.

In the meantime if you have any questions for This is Clapham BID please do get in touch.

Posted in Blog