Molly Nana contracted coronavirus at the end of November, but after being admitted to hospital with a worsening condition, doctors contacted specialists at Evelina London Children’s Hospital for advice.
Molly was taken to Evelina by the South Thames Retrieval Service (STRS), where she was diagnosed with a new condition called Paediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome (PIMS-TS or PIMS for short), which can affect the blood vessels, particularly those around the heart. It is very rare and can be successfully treated with anti-inflammatory drugs.
After three days in the paediatric intensive care unit and a night on the ward, Molly was able to go home on New Year’s Eve.
Now Molly’s dad, Simon, is aiming to raise £5,000 for Evelina London by cutting off his 92cm-long dreadlocks in March.
The 44-year-old said: “This is my way of saying ‘thank you’ to the amazing staff at Evelina London who saved Molly’s life. I’ll do whatever it takes to support them, and to raise awareness of PIMS-TS so other families get the right diagnosis and treatment.
“I’ve had dreadlocks for 15 years but when Molly came up with the idea of cutting them off to give something back to the hospital I couldn’t say no.”
Dr Jon Lillie, a Consultant in Paediatric Intensive Care at Evelina London, said: “Molly’s heart was not functioning well when she arrived at Evelina London so we started treatment to support the heart and reduce the inflammation. She responded really quickly and made a full recovery. It’s incredibly rewarding seeing children get better, and when they come back and tell us about their fundraising it’s extra special.
“While PIMS-TS is rare, it’s something we need families to be aware of so they know what to look out for and when to contact a health professional if they are worried about their child.”
To support Simon’s fundraising, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/simon-nana