Lewis said he initially believed he had the “human flu,” but five weeks later, his organs began to shut down.
Doctors later learned he had Strep A toxic shock syndrome, septicemia and necrotizing fasciitis. In order to save Lewis, doctors had to remove both of his arms and legs.
After spending six months in the hospital and undergoing 18 surgeries, including lip reconstruction, Lewis was released.
“The National Health Service would have cost me a lot of money initially and aftercare,” Lewis said on Good Morning Britain in 2017.
Lewis said it costs her $85,000 to $110,000 a year to use her wheelchair and prosthetics.
Now, as cases of strep continue to rise, Lewis is speaking out in hopes of saving lives.
“Don’t be afraid to ask for help and advice. We know the NHS is under a lot of pressure, but go to your doctor, call 111 or go to A&E if you need to, and get your child antibiotics,” Lewis said of the British public health agency. “Sorry, better to be safe. I am very lucky to be here. Don’t be afraid to push to see your child.’
Lewis’ campaign comes after nine children died of Strep A in the UK – the latest being a 5-year-old girl.
“I saw the interview with the father of the little girl at Alder Hey Hospital and it was very raw,” Lewis lamented. “I can only imagine what she’s going through and I know my family has been through the same thing. It’s tough.”