Cam­paign raises £31,000 to bring teacher home from Turk­ish hos­pi­tal

The Scotsman - - News Digest - By LIZZY BUCHAN

A teacher stuck in a Turk­ish hos­pi­tal after con­tract­ing E.coli could re­turn to the UK as early as to­day after a crowd­fund­ing ap­peal raised more than £31,000 to fly her home.

Caro­line Hope, who has been in Turkey for four years, picked up the po­ten­tially deadly in­fec­tion dur­ing surgery for colon can­cer last month.

The 37-year-old English teacher had de­cided to re­turn home to Scot­land after re­ceiv­ing her can­cer di­ag­no­sis in Jan­uary but com­pli­ca­tions from the surgery left her fight­ing for her life in Med­i­cal Park Hos­pi­tal in Izmir, Turkey.

Des­per­ate to bring her home, her fam­ily and friends have now raised more than £31,000 through a crowd­fund­ing cam­paign to pay for a pri­vate med­i­cal evac­u­a­tion, as there are strict rules around repa­tri­a­tions for med­i­cal rea­sons.

Her mother Cather­ine Hope, 74, of Cly­de­bank, West Dun­bar­ton­shire, said yes­ter­day: “They are hop­ing to do it to­mor­row. I’m re­ally re­lieved. I’m ab­so­lutely de­lighted she is com­ing home. We didn’t ex­pect this to hap­pen. We thought she would be home in a few days after her op­er­a­tion.

“I didn’t know what was go­ing to hap­pen for a while. I’ve had to wait at the end of the phone, jump­ing when it rings.”

Mrs Hope had been due to fly out to her daugh­ter’s bed­side but her son Scott, who is in Turkey, called to tell her to pre­pare for her daugh­ter’s re­turn to Scot­land, where she will con­tinue che­mother­apy treat­ment in Glas­gow.

Mrs Hope said she had been over­whelmed by the sup­port but called on the govern­ment to do more, saying: “They should have some­thing in place. Not ev­ery­body has got the where­withal to cover these costs.”

The case was raised in the Com­mons by SNP MP Martin Docherty-hughes (West Dun­bar­ton­shire), who also wrote to For­eign Sec­re­tary Boris Johnson call­ing for him to in­ter­vene in the case.

Mr Docherty-hughes said: “We are in a sit­u­a­tion where the govern­ment is find­ing money for cer­tain things and we have a cit­i­zen who re­ally is in dire straits, who should be un­der pro­tec­tion of the UK govern­ment.”

Martin Docherty-hughes raised the case in the Com­mons

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