Amputee MP Returns to Commons, Vows to Fight for Sepsis Awareness


In an uncommon spectacle of unity amidst the discord of British politics, a Conservative legislator came back to his duties only half a year after sepsis brought him to the brink of death, leading to the amputation of his hands and feet.

Craig Mackinlay, the legislator in question, strode single-handedly into the revered House of Commons just ahead of the habitual Prime Minister’s Questions session that is held weekly. This unexpected event caused something of a stir, prompting lawmakers from both government and opposition ranks to rise collectively in standing ovation.

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Lindsay Hoyle, the Speaker in the House at that time, responded to the heartfelt clapping by addressing the assembly. “As you know, we don’t allow applause,” she reminded them, whilst Mackinlay’s wife and their four-year-old daughter observed the proceedings from the spectators’ gallery. Hoyle then added, “But this is an exception.”

At 57 years old, Mackinlay keenly wishes to assume the epithet of “the bionic MP”. He further delineated plans to champion increased awareness of the symptoms of sepsis and to lobby for the UK’s National Health Service – which, in his case, was life-saving – to offer improved treatment and prosthetics services to individuals who, like himself, have undergone multiple limb amputations.

Whilst addressing his peers in the chamber, an emotional Mackinlay voiced his gratitude to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Hoyle for visiting him during his hospital stay. He lightened the somber mood by jesting about how his hospital neighbors must have assumed his condition was terminal, on account of them thinking that the Speaker, wearing a formal black tailcoat, was a funeral director preparing for the inevitable.

The MP implored Sunak to make certain that the national health service embed recognition of sepsis’ early warning signs. “If we can stop somebody ending up like this, I would say that is a job well done,” he noted before going ahead to urge health ministers to support the “provision of appropriate prosthetics.”

Mackinlay recounted how on September 28th he was admitted to hospital feeling unwell. His condition quickly deteriorated, with his body turning a chilling “bright blue” as sepsis-induced clotting impeded blood supply to his limbs. As his body’s immune response overpowered its own tissues and organs, he developed septic shock. As a result, he was put in an induced coma, and his wife was warned that his chances of survival were a paltry 5%.

He awoke from this enforced slumber sixteen days later to find that his limbs had adopted strange hues, black as night and hard “like plastic.” Come December 1, his hands and feet were amputated, with the surgery being successful enough to preserve the part of his limbs “above the elbows and above the knees,” a fact that had him count himself “lucky.”

Mackinlay, who has held a parliamentary seat for the South Thanet district of southeast England since 2015, announced his intent to seek reelection in the upcoming elections. His positive disposition has been noted by many, and there also lies a hint of that spirit in his speech to the House as he stated, “I have not had much to be cheerful about, but that’s my nature. There’s not much you can do about it, so there’s not much point in getting upset about it.”