Queen Alexandra Hospital Pride of Portsmouth awards: QA medic who 'saved boy's life' is praised

‘IF IT wasn’t for him, I don’t think Spencer would be here right now’ – a Gosport mum thanks the Queen Alexandra practitioner who potentially saved her son’s life.

Tuesday, 28th December 2021, 4:55 am
Updated Wednesday, 29th December 2021, 9:16 am

Advanced clinical practitioner Ben Downer was highly commended at this year’s virtual Pride of Portsmouth Awards, under The News’ Patients’ Choice Award category.

He was nominated by Rebecca Penberthy after his quick-thinking saved eight-year-old Spencer.

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Spencer Penberthy while he was in hospital

41-year-old Rebecca said: ‘In last year Spencer fell off his bike and the handlebar hit his stomach.

‘We took him to QA and Ben saw us as soon as we got through reception. He really quickly gave him pain relief instantly arranged for him to be seen quickly.

Harriet, Iain, Spencer and Rebecca Penberthy from Gosport

‘A lot of medical professionals might have just thought Spencer winded himself and sent him home but Ben had a feeling something wasn't right so arranged for him to have a CT scan.

‘It turned out Spencer had been cut through the pancreas. If he hadn't had that CT scan I don't think he would be here right now.

‘Ben arranged for him to go to London for treatment and he was there within seven hours of us arriving at QA.

‘He stayed in hospital for two months and still needed rest at home and was being fed by a feeding tube for quite a while as he had part of his pancreas.’

Ben Downer

She added: ‘I don't think Spencer realised how serious it was. He just wanted to get home for his birthday on July 29. He knows now he was very lucky.’