Hackney care centre helped man made homeless by insect bite
PUBLISHED: 15:45 05 October 2020 | UPDATED: 18:07 06 October 2020
An electrician thanked a Hackney wound care centre after an infected insect bite resulted in him losing his job and becoming homeless.
Shaun Bunting is urging people to seek medical help as early as possible if they are worried about their legs and feet.
The Essex electrician became homeless after being bitten by a mosquito while working abroad in Namibia and is thankful for the specialist wound care he received from Accelerate in Mare Street, Hackney.
The 53-year-old said: “I’m very grateful for the care and support I have had to help me get well and to get a roof back over my head. It sounds unbelievable to say it was caused by an insect bite on my leg.
“People just aren’t aware of the risks.”
After his self-referral to the Hackney care centre, Shaun was diagnosed with a hard-to-treat skin condition called pyroderma gangrenosum.
But because he did not seek treatment earlier, he was left with disabilities, no longer able to work.
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He said: “I ended up living on people’s sofas and eventually had to live in my car. I was in so much pain that I could barely sleep.”
At the height of lockdown, he was admitted to The Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel for three weeks and, after finding out he was homeless, the nurses there put him in touch with a housing association.
Within three days they had found him temporary accommodation to move into.
Accelerate chief executive Alison Hopkins is involved with the Legs Matter Campaign, working to improve care for serious lower leg conditions.
She said: “Lower limb conditions are a silent and growing epidemic, but with the right care, much of the suffering and life-changing leg and foot problems could be avoided.”
She urges people to seek help quickly if they are worried or their leg or foot is not healing, to help avoid permanent disability.
An All-Party Parliamentary Report published in 2019 revealed that every hour in England, someone over 50 has a foot amputation and every two hours someone loses their whole leg.
Visit legsmatter.org/three-point-leg-check for more information.
Organisers have created the ‘Legs Matter Lounge’ with helpful videos, resources and free virtual events including meditation and live Q&A sessions with experts, sign up by clicking here.
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