By Chris King •
Updated: 22 Sep 2023 • 20:57
Image of Praia do Camilo beach on Portugal's Algarve.
Credit: Pawel Kazmierczak/Shutterstock.com
A young couple from Wales are stranded on Portugal’s Algarve after their son was suddenly taken seriously ill during their holiday.
As a result of hitting his head after a fall, two-year-old Theo Jones has been left unable to walk or talk, according to walesonline.co.uk, this Friday 22.
After being initially diagnosed with a possible brain virus, he is currently being cared for by paediatric neurologists in Faro Hospital.
His parents, 32-year-old Sarah, and 35-year-old Paul want to fly their son back to Wales for treatment. However, their insurance company is allegedly stalling despite already admitting that Theo is covered by their policy.
Theo originally suffered his accident last Wednesday, September 13. When he subsequently started vomiting, his parents called for an ambulance and he was rushed to a hospital.
The facility discharged the youngster but two days later his condition worsened and Theo was taken back to the hospital in Faro.
Doctors at the Algarve facility initially told the parents that their son had a form of stomach flu. However, an MRI scan revealed that Theo had something wrong in his cerebellum which was when they suggested that the problem could be a brain virus.
Speaking with WalesOnline, Mrs Jones said that their holiday in the Algarve town of Cabanas had turned into a ‘living nightmare’.
The couple also have their five-month-old daughter on the trip with them who is being looked after by Sarah’s parents who were with them on the holiday.
‘Our beautiful chatty, active boy has lost the ability to speak, sit, walk. They are convinced the fall was coincidental and this is a viral attack. But three hours before the fall he had no signs of being unwell and was running in and out of the pool’, she told the news outlet.
Mrs Jones continued: ‘He fell on the front of his head not the back, but it seems to have been triggered by the fall. We are just desperate to get him home’.
The family has insurance with AXA, but Mrs Jones insisted: ‘I can’t speak to the people making these decisions. They’re an elusive entity within AXA that no one seems to be able to penetrate and get access to’.
‘It’s a nightmare. It’s not that we haven’t got the cover, they’ve accepted responsibility. They’re just sitting on their hands now’, she added.
Despite Theo’s parents arranging a transfer with Cardiff’s University Hospital Wales, it is not possible for the little boy to travel without using a specialised medical aircraft. ‘We now just need to get him there’, stressed his mother.
‘We are very sorry to hear that Mr & Mrs Jones’ son has been taken ill and we sympathise with their situation’, a spokesperson for the insurance company AXA Partners told the newspaper.
They continued: ‘Our priority is to ensure the family can return to the UK at the appropriate time, and we are working with the treating facility to ensure their son receives the level of care required’.
‘At this time, medical professionals are monitoring his condition and we are preparing for the repatriation to the UK. We are in regular contact with Mrs Jones, who is being supported by a dedicated team’, they concluded.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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