Update: British man who contracted leukaemia whilst on vacation in Thailand loses battle

Photo courtesy of Echo News UK

The British man from Southend who fought a battle against leukaemia, contracted whilst on holiday in Thailand, in late November last year, has passed away at Southend Hospital.

Dean Penson’s fateful journey began when he fell critically ill during a holiday in Thailand, prompting a 10-day hospital stay where doctors initially feared the worst – leukaemia. A desperate fundraising effort was ignited to bring the 41 year old British national back to Southend.

His friend, Ben Page, flew to Thailand, spending 1,600 British pounds (approximately 72,588 baht) on treatment, including two blood transfusions, reported the News UK.

Over the weekend, Page broke the heartbreaking news on Facebook, leaving the community in mourning. Penson’s next-door neighbour, 32 year old Rachel Warren shared her grief.

“Dean was not only my neighbour; he was the kindest, sweetest, funniest person I knew. I’m utterly heartbroken.”

Reflecting on the tragedy, 33 year old Jakub Perzyski who lived with Penson during the Covid lockdown, expressed profound gratitude.

“He was a gentle giant, the kindest soul I’ve ever met. It’s so sad that Dean is no longer here, and my thoughts are with his family and friends.”

Angus Browne, acquainted with Penson through mutual friend Page, remembered him as a down-to-earth and lovely guy.

“The loyalty and kindness Dean and Ben showed each other were just so sweet and lovely.”

ORIGINAL STORY: Holiday nightmare: British citizen stranded in Thai hospital with a 400,000 baht plea to escape

A British citizen‘s tropical holiday in Thailand has turned into a desperate battle for survival, as he faces suspected leukaemia in dire hospital conditions.

With blood-soaked beds and a looming 10,000 pounds (446,000 baht) bill, Dean Penson’s ordeal has become a nightmare that his friends are determined to end.

Penson, a British citizen from Southend-on-Sea, who looked forward to a blissful break in Thailand’s Phuket, now finds himself trapped in the nightmarish Vachira Phuket Hospital. A suspected case of leukaemia has turned his paradise into a desperate struggle for life, aggravated by shocking conditions in the government-run medical facility.

Penson’s best friend, Ben Page, paints a harrowing picture of the hospital’s conditions, describing it as a place resembling a war-torn zone.

“It feels like the third world. There’s blood all over Dean’s bed. There has been blood on the cover since he got there. There’s no toilet roll, you just wash with a hose.”

Shockingly, Penson’s roommates are succumbing to their illnesses just feet away, with no privacy or dignity in their final moments.

The British citizen’s dire situation is compounded by the absence of travel insurance, a decision that now haunts him and his friends. Urged by his friend, Page, to secure coverage before departure, Penson’s hesitation due to a pre-existing knee injury has left him facing astronomical medical bills.

In a desperate bid to bring their friend home, Page and others have initiated a crowdfunding campaign, hoping to raise approximately 10,000 pounds.

Penson’s health spiral began around November 15, prompting a rushed visit to a local hospital. With an alarmingly low blood count, he underwent numerous transfusions over ten days, Page revealed.

“He’s just got worse and worse, he’s really anaemic… His bloods are just so low, which could be leukaemia.”

Despite hopes that Penson will be fit to fly soon, a staggering hospital bill looms large, adding to the financial burden, reported The Mirror UK.

Page, who briefly returned to the UK before rejoining his friend, expressed concern about the mounting hospital charges.

“The hospital has so far charged around 5,000. He’s obviously run up a bill here that he can’t afford to pay.”

The situation worsens as Penson anticipates another visit to A&E upon his return, piling on more financial woes.

Thailand NewsWorld News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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