John Simpson ‘back from the brink’ after health scare

The BBC’s John Simpson told his Twitter followers on Sunday he was “back from the brink” after ending up in intensive care following an allergic reaction.

The BBC’s world affairs editor, 72, first revealed his illness last week.

He tweeted: “Thank heavens for Stuart McKechnie & the ICU team at the Radcliffe. I’d not have survived, due to a rare & deadly allergic reaction.”

On Sunday, Simpson thanked a well-wisher on Twitter, saying it was “terrifying but all fine now”.

According to the Mail on Sunday, Simpson was first admitted to Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital after suffering from food poisoning and severe dehydration.

Simpson’s wife Dee Kruger told the newspaper: “It was like a perfect storm.

‘Acute shock’

“There was a whole chain of events that meant there was an overreaction on the kidney side which made him seriously ill.

“From being mildly unwell the shocking thing was how, in the space of hours, his body went into a kind of acute shock. Suddenly these guys in the intensive care unit at the Radcliffe were fighting for his life.”

Simpson praised the staff of the hospital in another tweet on Sunday, crediting them with saving his life.

And on Monday, he posted: “Thanks again to the magnificent NHS – my Monday outlook is perfect.”

Simpson joined the BBC at 25 as a sub-editor in the radio newsroom, before becoming a political reporter and then political editor. He later became a foreign affairs correspondent.

In 1991, he was the BBC’s key correspondent in Baghdad during the Gulf War, staying in the city despite being ordered to leave by his employers.

Since becoming the editor of the BBC’s world affairs unit, the stories he has covered included the fall of Ceausescu in Romania and Nelson Mandela’s release from prison.

Simpson currently reports on areas including Iraq, Afghanistan, Nigeria, China, Russia and Ukraine.


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