A Lancing man who caught E. coli while on a trip to Mexico said one year later he is still suffering the affects of the holiday from hell.
Clive Campbell, of Sompting Road, booked the trip-of-a-lifetime to a coastal resort in Mexico through a major airline as a package deal to celebrate his wife Caroline’s 60th birthday.
But it was only a day after returning to Lancing that Clive, 63, was admitted to intensive care at Worthing Hospital after he developed gastric symptoms and a fever.
Staff at the hospital diagnosed him with Sepsis and Haemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS), a severe complication of an E. coli infection that can lead to kidney failure.
Clive said: “To fall seriously ill immediately after coming back to the UK and end up spending three weeks in hospital has meant the memories of the holiday and Caroline’s 60th birthday have been ruined forever.”
Last year, Clive spoke to the Herald about his ordeal and said the infection had likely come from the beach in Mexico. This prompted him to launch a campaign across West Sussex beaches urging residents to wash their hands after visiting the seafront.
Hoping to have the backing of West Sussex County Council, Clive’s campaign was short-lived and his posters, which were illegally pinned to wall on the seafront, were removed.
Now, one year on, Clive said contracting E. coli has badly affected his work life.
“They won’t let me get back to my job. I’m an advanced scaffolder, but it’s too hard and heavy for me to do, so I’ve gone back on the market looking for a job,” he said.
But Clive said there is a lot of age discrimination when it comes to employment.
“Who’s is going to hire me at 63? In the last year I’ve been dipping into my savings,” he added.
Although Clive initially believed the beach was where he contracted the infection, he has since questioned the cleanliness of the resort.
He said: “The hotel really wasn’t up to the standards we had expected and we were left disappointed.”
The couple claimed to see birds inside one of the restaurants. Clive also reported that some of the chilled food, such as cheese and meats, were often served at room temperature.
Clive is currently seeking legal action against the airline.
“We want to know what caused me to fall so ill and that the hygiene concerns we have raised will be looked into,” he said.
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