Tributes were paid to a man believed to be the UK’s oldest hospitalized Covid 19 patient who died after 15 months in intensive care.
Jason Kelk, 49, a school computer technician from Leeds, died on Friday just hours after doctors at St James’s Hospital in Leeds withdrew treatment at his request.
He had been on a ventilator for much of his hospital treatment and suffered from delirium, kidney damage and cardiac arrest.
In January, he took his first steps and his condition started to improve. In April, he told ITV Calendar, via a video call from his hospital, that he hoped to return home to find his wife Sue.
But in recent weeks he has had a relapse and his condition has deteriorated. Mr Kelk retained his mental abilities, but his wife said he no longer had the strength to face the ongoing fight.
Despite his pleas, he told the doctors to stop the treatment he was receiving. On Friday morning, the medical team ended his intravenous feeding, oxygen supply, and 24-hour kidney filtration. He died a few hours later.
Jason’s wife told ITV News that he is “very strong, very kind and very loving and just a hero really.”
She added: “I think it has given hope to a lot of people who have suffered from covid and the after effects of covid and maybe realize that it is a really horrible thing and to keep going. the rules, abide by the rules. “
Parklands Primary School, Seacroft, Leeds, where Kelk worked for 17 years, will rename the school’s computer suite in his honor.
School principal Chris Dyson was allowed to visit Mr Kelk in the hospital on Thursday evening.
He said: “I was really very proud to have had the opportunity to go see him yesterday even though there were only immediate family members and just to be able to spend an hour with him in holding his hand, being able to give him a hug goodbye, kiss him on the head because he’s been in this school for 17 years, he revolutionized computing. It’s just a really sad day.
“People who say Covid doesn’t exist. This poor man has been hospitalized for 16 months, lying in a coma in a hospital bed… it’s just a tragic mess for someone so young. “