Special Olympics medalist survives seven week battle with Covid-19

An Olympic medalist who has Down's Syndrome spent seven weeks in an intensive care unit battling coronavirus - but pulled through.

Craig Sharratt, 41, was one of the first patients to be put on a ventilator at Borders General Hospital near Melrose, Scottish Borders, after becoming ill with Covid-19 shortly before the lockdown.

His family believe he may have picked up the killer bug while traveling to his job in McDonald's, by bus.

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Craig, who is the son of two Scottish sporting champions, and grew up in a competitive family, scooped silver and bronze medals in badminton at the Special Olympics in 2007, when the games were held in China.

Craig Sharratt, 41, was one of the first patients to be put on a ventilator at Borders General Hospital near Melrose, Scottish Borders, after becoming ill with Covid-19 shortly before the lockdown.Craig Sharratt, 41, was one of the first patients to be put on a ventilator at Borders General Hospital near Melrose, Scottish Borders, after becoming ill with Covid-19 shortly before the lockdown.
Craig Sharratt, 41, was one of the first patients to be put on a ventilator at Borders General Hospital near Melrose, Scottish Borders, after becoming ill with Covid-19 shortly before the lockdown. | Other 3rd Party

But he since then he has gained weight, and his older brother, Del, 43, believes that may have been a contributing factor to how long Craig was in ICU - where he spent five weeks on a ventilator.

He left ICU on May 7, and has been doing physio - with medics describing him as 'the miracle man'.

Craig, from Jedburgh, Scottish Borders, was discharged on Friday, after testing negative, to the delight of his family.

Proud brother Del, 43, said: "It was around Mother's Day when Craig became ill, he wasn't there because he wasn't feeling well.

Craig, who is the son of two Scottish sporting champions, and grew up in a competitive family, scooped silver and bronze medals in badminton at the Special Olympics in 2007, when the games were held in China.Craig, who is the son of two Scottish sporting champions, and grew up in a competitive family, scooped silver and bronze medals in badminton at the Special Olympics in 2007, when the games were held in China.
Craig, who is the son of two Scottish sporting champions, and grew up in a competitive family, scooped silver and bronze medals in badminton at the Special Olympics in 2007, when the games were held in China. | Other 3rd Party

"The next day he was taken into hospital and they put him on a ventilator.

"They took him off at one point but had to put him back on as he was struggling to breathe.

"Seven weeks is the longest anyone has spent being treated in the Borders General Hospital ICU - Craig was the youngest person in there by far.

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"Craig is overweight and I think 80 per cent of people in ICU are overweight."

The family were kept updated throughout Craig's time in ICU, but Del praised his younger brother's determination to pull through.

Dad-of-two Del said: "All through his life he's had guts and determination and drive.

"Craig has kind of retired from sport, he doesn't do anything competitive now.”

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