A GREAT-GRANDMA left fighting for her life after contracting Legionnaires’ disease on a Jet2 Corfu holiday has won a five-figure payout.
Ann Best, 71, felt unwell in the second week of her trip to Sidari but initially put her flu-like symptoms down to the heat.
Back home in Middlesbrough, Ann was prescribed antibiotics by her GP but had deteriorated so much by her second visit that he had to call an ambulance.
Her husband Michael said his heart “skipped a beat” at hospital when he was told the diagnosis.
“Years ago Legionnaires‘ was a death sentence,” he said. “You went into hospital and you never came out.”
Michael, who is disabled from arthritis and multiple surgeries, added: “I really thought I was going to lose her.
“It was so bad they had to give her oxygen therapy and nearly put her in an induced coma but thankfully she pulled through.”
‘COULD HAVE DIED’
The disease – a potentially fatal lung infection caused by inhaling tiny droplets of infected water – is commonly linked to air conditioning systems.
Two Brits died from the disease earlier this year after reportedly staying at a hotel in Bulgaria.
The couple, who have two daughters, six grandchildren and recently welcomed a great-granddaughter, won a payout from tour operator Jet2 Holidays Limited, the company that booked their stay at Maria Apartments.
Ann said: “I am concerned about air conditioning units in hotels abroad. I think a place can look clean but you can’t always see behind the scenes.
“You don’t know if their air-conditioning units or water systems are monitored or cleaned properly and that frightens me”.
The great-grandma was discharged three weeks after her diagnosis in August 2015, but says she was unable to get out of bed for two months.
She says her breathlessness and lack of energy has made even the simplest of tasks very difficult to this day.
What is Legionnaire's?
- Legionnaires’ disease is a lung infection that can be caught by inhaling tiny droplets of water.
- It can be caught in places like hotels, hospitals or offices, through things like air conditioning, spa pools, hot tubs, showers, taps and toilets.
- It’s very to catch it at home.
- Symptoms include high temperature, fever and chills; cough; muscle pain; headache and very occasionally pneumonia.
- If diagnosed, you may have to go to hospital.
- Treatments include getting antiobiotics directly thorugh a vein and oxygen or a machine to help you breathe.
- Antibiotic treatment usually lasts 1 to 3 weeks.
Source: NHS England
“The staff at the hospital said that if the doctor had not referred me to hospital when he did I might not have survived,” she added. “That fear plays on my mind now.”
Nicola Rostron, a specialist travel lawyer at Slater and Gordon, said: “Mrs Best came back from holiday with a life-threatening illness, which even now is still having a serious impact on her day-to-day life.
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“Anyone operating an establishment with air conditioning or a hot tub or anything else linked to Legionnaires’ should be aware of the risks and their responsibilities in maintaining them.
Jet2 had a duty of care to make sure that was the case”.
The Sun Online has approached Jet2 for a comment.
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