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Family's appeal as Herne Bay boy, 5, fights for life with Covid


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A five-year-old boy living with one of the world's rarest conditions is fighting for his life in hospital after contracting Covid.

Little Rupert Moore, the only child in England known to have Vici Syndrome, was rushed from his home in Broomfield to Margate’s QEQM Hospital after catching the virus last week.

The youngster was then placed in intensive care on Wednesday, amid grave forecasts from doctors that he was going to die.

But loved ones believe he will pull through, as he continues to battle the virus five days on from the bleak prognosis.

Mum Camilla Crick told KentOnline: “It’s now the fifth day after that, and he’s showing slight improvements.

“I took him to the QEQM Hospital with a chest infection. He tested positive for Covid, and it then deteriorated from Sunday to Tuesday.

“It got to the point where the doctors at Margate said they couldn’t do anything else. They were saying he wasn’t going to make it.”

Broomfield child Rupert Moore pictured with mum Camilla Crick in 2019
Broomfield child Rupert Moore pictured with mum Camilla Crick in 2019

Ms Crick says medics gave her the option of either “making Rupert comfortable or putting him in intensive care”.

She chose the latter, which meant he was transferred to the Evelina Children's Hospital in London on Wednesday.

Experts in the capital delivered a similarly grave prediction, saying he had just one day to live.

But latest scans reveal Rupert, who turned five on Friday, has improved in recent days.

“His condition can deteriorate, but at the moment he’s stable and slightly improving,” Ms Crick added.

Broomfield five-year-old Rupert Moore is fighting for his life in hospital
Broomfield five-year-old Rupert Moore is fighting for his life in hospital

“He’s showing that he is trying to fight whatever’s going on in his body. I’m being told it’s just a waiting game now.

“I think he will survive. You can tell he isn’t giving up – he’s not ready.”

Throughout his short life, Rupert has been defying the odds. Experts told his mother that he would die before his fourth birthday, due to his ongoing battle with Vici.

Only about 100 cases of the incurable condition have been documented around the world, with sufferers typically dying as infants. Just one is known to have survived beyond the age of 11.

“I have lots of medical equipment at home to try to keep him in a stable condition,” Ms Crick continued.

Rupert Moore, from Broomfield near Herne Bay, was diagnosed with terminal illness Vici Syndrome in 2017
Rupert Moore, from Broomfield near Herne Bay, was diagnosed with terminal illness Vici Syndrome in 2017

“The syndrome affects every part of his body, mainly his chest. There’s nothing that will make it better, but it’s about managing the symptoms.

“He’s got a back brace that he has to wear every day, splints for his legs and he has a fully dislocated hip. He can’t walk, crawl or even turn over or lift his head.”

Vici’s symptoms include seizures, cataracts, visual impairment, hearing loss, and the failure of the muscles and brain to develop properly.

Rupert is registered blind, unable to speak, eat, move or hold his head up unassisted – but Ms Crick says this is the first time her son has been admitted to intensive care.

She has launched a fundraiser to generate £2,000 to help her travel to and stay in London to be at her son’s bedside.

“It’s a nearly two-hour drive from home to the hospital,” Ms Crick explained.

“I’ve got two other children, and they need me as well – so the money is for us to stay in a hotel in London a few days a week until Rupert gets better.

"This is the most devastating time. Everyone who knows me knows Rupert's my whole world."

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