A motorcyclist who was severely injured after he was knocked off his bike and run over by a car is helping others with major trauma through a new charity partnership at The James Cook University Hospital.
Mark McCourt, from South Shields, is Day One Trauma’s first peer support volunteer at James Cook and, along with others, will be available to talk to the hospital’s major trauma patients, giving them hope and improving their recovery journey.
Day One is the only charity supporting major trauma patients and their families in the UK regardless of injury type or location.
The partnership with James Cook is the first time the charity has joined forces with a NHS trust in the north east to offer this support in the region.
As well as providing peer support, a caseworker from the charity will be working alongside the hospital’s staff to provide trauma patients with practical, emotional, and financial support.
Just over a year ago Mark, who is a former marine engineer, was out on his motorbike on a country road near Middleton-in-Teesdale, when he was flipped over his handlebars by a car at a junction, which resulted in him bouncing off the bonnet and across the road, where he was run over.
He remained awake throughout the horrific ordeal which shattered his pelvis, broke his leg, knee, ribs, and vertebrate.
He was air lifted to James Cook’s major trauma centre where specialist medical staff operated on him.
He spent a month in hospital and even longer at home recovering, which involved learning to walk again, living downstairs and showering in a pop-up tent in the garden.
Speaking about his crash for the first time Mark said: “Although what happened to me was horrendous, I was lucky to have the support of my family around me to get me through it.
“I had excellent care from the hospital staff, but when a major physical trauma happens to you, there are so many questions that go through your head and you don’t know where to turn.”
It’s fantastic that Day One is there to help people like me, and my family, navigate the system and I can’t wait to give back and use my experience to help others across the north east.”Mark McCourt
Lucy Nickson, CEO of Day One Trauma Support, said: “We’re thrilled to launch this partnership so we can help people like Mark get the support they so truly deserve. NHS clinical care is exceptional and has improved thanks to the work of Major Trauma Centres such as the one at James Cook.”
“If you suffer a major physical trauma, you are more likely to survive your injuries, but enormous pressures on the NHS and inequities in the system mean recovery and rehabilitation support is inconsistent.
“That’s why Day One is becoming the ‘go to’ support for anyone affected by major trauma, as we can provide the vital practical and emotional support people need so they can rebuild their lives and look forward to the future.”