Running on in memory of dad

Charity Sepsis Runners Angela Garrity and Lucy Harrison prepare for their big race.Picture Richard Ponter 131416
Charity Sepsis Runners Angela Garrity and Lucy Harrison prepare for their big race.Picture Richard Ponter 131416
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A Scarborough daughter campaigning to raise awareness of the condition that claimed her father’s life is hitting the road with her best friend in a marathon fundraising effort.

Angela Garrity has been raising funds and awareness for the Sepsis Trust since her dad Paul died in July last year at the age of 62.

Up until his death Mr Garrity had been a popular athlete and fell runner.

However he fell ill suddenly after contracting sepsis - a severe reaction to infection, which can not only be treated but cured if diagnosed early enough.

In honour of Mr Garrity, Angela’s best friend Lucy Harrison is taking part in this year’s London Marathon in aid of the Sepsis Trust.

Angela said: “Unfortunately I wasn’t lucky enough to get a place, but Lucy has and she is very kindly running for my dad and the Sepsis Trust.

“We have been training together, and now Lucy is at marathon standard I’m doing my best to help raise funds.

“Lucy has been absolutely fantastic supporting me and raising money for the charity.”

Angela hopes the run and fundraising will further raise awareness of Sepsis, and the work the national charity is doing to try and save thousands of lives every year.

The Garrity’s have been campaigning with the charity to get the Department of Health to sign the Sepsis Six declaration, recognising sepsis as a medical emergency and training front line medical staff to recognise the symptoms early and administer life saving treatment.

The Sepsis Trust believes that establishing Sepsis as a medical emergency and a clinical priority for the NHS is likely to save at least 10,000 extra lives per year, and yield annual savings to the NHS of more than £170 million.

Timely interventions, including antibiotics and intravenous fluids, can halve the risk of dying, yet they are given to less than one in seven cases.

Angela said: “My dad went into hospital on a Friday, yet was wasn’t given antibiotics until the Monday. Sadly that is not an uncommon thing as nurses, junior doctors and GPs have little training in Sepsis and recognising it early on.

“Sepsis can kill in six hours, yet equally it can be cured simply with antibiotics.

“Since campaigning I have had a lot of people tell me there are much more aware of Sepsis now, but there is still a long way to go. Just this Easter 1,200 people in the UK will have contracted Sepsis. Of that 800 will have died.

“The Department of Health in Wales and Scotland have both signed up to this, and we will keep fighting and raising the issue until we can get the same in England. We are also encouraging individual hospitals to put measures in place.”

Angela and Lucy hope to raise £1000 for the UK Sepsis Trust through sponsorship for the London Marathon. To sponsor them visit www.justgiving.com/lucy-harrison6 or visit Morrisons pharmacy in Eastfield to fill out a sponsorship form.