Hospital ward gifted £10,000 for helping save Emsworth girl's life

AN ‘INCREDIBLE’ children’s ward has been gifted £10,000 after helping save the life of a five-year-old girl from Emsworth.

Thursday, 6th January 2022, 2:28 pm
Updated Thursday, 6th January 2022, 2:58 pm

‘Beautiful’ Everlynn Hunt was admitted to the Southampton Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) in 2018 after developing viral meningitis, which formed due to an abscess between her skull and brain following an inner ear infection.

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She was transferred there in a medically induced coma after an initial diagnosis at St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester just 24 hours earlier. Thanks to the hard work of the healthcare workers involved was able to return home nine days later.

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Everlynn Hunt, eight, with workers from PICU

Her mum Sophia, 38, said: ‘I can’t thank all the hospital staff enough, nothing I could ever do could show how grateful I am.

‘Everyone involved helped save her life. If it wasn’t for the consultant at St Richard’s who diagnosed her, the consultant who put her in the coma, the consultant who performed her operation, and the consultant and all the staff who looked after her she might not be here.’

Last year, after sharing her story with colleagues at her then workplace Royale Life, in Whiteley, Sophia’s boss generously decided to donate £10,000 to the Friends of PICU charity to support other children like Everlynn.

‘I really can’t say enough what an amazing job the PICU team do,’ Sophia said.

Everlynn Hunt, eight, gifting the £10,000 cheque from Royale Life to the Friends of PICU

‘When I see their ambulance sometimes on the M27 I’m hit with sadness for the families knowing what they could be going through. But there is a silver lining because I know their child is going to be so well looked after.’

The family first knew something was wrong with Bosmere Junior School pupil Everlynn, now aged eight, when she suffered an intense constant headache and felt like her ‘head was going to explode’ while on holiday.

Sophia has urged other parents to look out for the warning signs.

Everlynn Hunt, eight, with Emily the mascot for Friends of PICU

She said: ‘Viral meningitis can be just as dangerous as bacterial but there won’t be a rash which is what most people look for.

‘Main symptoms to look out for are a high temperature, cold feet, pain in the neck, not being able to move the neck and a constant, intense headache.’

Everlynn also lives with younger sister Julienne and dad Rob.

To find out more about Friends of PICU visit friendsofpicu.org.uk.

Everlynn Hunt, eight, from Emsworth in a PICU ambulance

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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