Hastings Covid-19 survivor donates £1,000 to Conquest’s intensive care unit

A Hastings man who survived Covid-19 having been in a coma and on a ventilator has donated £1,000 to Conquest Hospital’s intensive care unit to thank staff for saving his life.

Wednesday, 2nd September 2020, 4:55 pm
Ben Crease donates £1,000 to the intensive care unit at Conquest Hospital SUS-200209-164425001

Ben Crease was diagnosed with the virus in March after being admitted to Conquest Hospital, approximately ten days after first experiencing symptoms.

After being told by a doctor there was a very real risk he may die if no action was taken, Ben was put into a medically induced coma and transferred to the intensive care unit (ICU).

Eight days later, he became just the second Covid patient in Hastings to be extubated (breathing tube removed) and shortly after was transferred to Baird Ward to continue his recovery.

This week, Ben returned to ICU to present £1,000 to the staff who helped save his life.

Speaking about the donation, Ben said: “Yes I know that is only a drop in the ocean compared to the expense incurred in them saving me, but it is a start and hopefully they can use it towards something that will help save someone else.

“I have watched the effects of easing lock-down restrictions and I am dismayed that so many people still seem complacent about Covid. The virus cannot read and it has no ears to hear Government advice and would not comply even if it had. It is still about and there is not yet any vaccine. This virus has one purpose and that is to infect and kill as many people as it can.

“Keep your distance, keep clean, keep safe, for you may not be as fortunate as me.”

Ben said he first showed symptoms of Covid-19 on the weekend of March 14 and 15, when he felt a ‘bit tingly’ down his back as though a cold breeze was hitting him.

Unaware he had the virus, he visited his 93-year-old mum and 94-year-old dad, but fortunately kept his distance and did not infect them.

Ben’s condition got worse and on March 24 he said he felt like he had been hit by a train and ‘done ten rounds with Mike Tyson’. Struggling to breathe, he eventually called for an ambulance and was taken into hospital.

Ben lost ten per cent of his body weight while in hospital and needed help from doctors to start walking again. He started getting stronger but said he still struggles to sleep while he is on his own.

At the start of July, Ben started participating in Conquest Hospital’s ongoing research into Covid-19 which involves speaking to people who have survived the virus after being in a coma or on a ventilator.

He is now back to work - servicing fire extinguishers - but says he is very cautious about which premises to visit and always wears a mask and a face shield.