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Hayley Okines: "An inspiration to others"

"I can't imagine life without her.........." The words of the heartbroken mother of teenager Hayley Okines who died earlier this month.

The seventeen year old from Sussex was born with the rare congenital condition Progeria which sees patients' bodies age eight times faster than the normal rate.

She dedicated her short life to raising awareness of the condition - always hoping for a cure.

Today Hayley's mother said her daughter was an inspiration to others. Malcolm Shaw reports.

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Asthma sufferers told to stay indoors to avoid air pollution

Doctors are warning those with heart or lung problems or asthma to stay indoors and avoid heavy activity outside due to the air pollution today.

Dr Yvonne Doyle from Public Health England told ITV News: "If you're fit and healthy you probably will notice nothing. But if you have heart and lung conditions then you need to ease of quite a bit on heavy activity."


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Warning as 'very high' pollution levels to hit parts of UK

Air pollution levels are set to become 'high' and 'very high' in parts of central, eastern and northern England today, experts have warned.

A combination of pollutants trapped near the ground, a small amount of Saharan dust and winds bringing across pollution from Europe has damaged air quality across the country.

Pollution levels will become 'very high' in some parts today Credit: Defra

By tomorrow, however, sharper winds from the Atlantic are expected to clear some of the toxic elements, bringing air pollution levels down to moderate or low.

The latest information on pollution levels can be found on the Defra website.

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Brighton schoolboy dies of meningitis

A schoolboy from the Brighton area died this week after he contracted meningitis, health officials said.

A Public Health England (PHE) spokeswoman said letters have been sent to parents at the boy's school and only those who had come into immediate contact with the child would be at risk of contracting the illness.

Public Health England can confirm that a child from the Brighton area has sadly died of presumed meningococcal septicaemia. This is seldom transmitted from person to person.

Only close household contacts need antibiotics as a precaution against an extremely low risk of the contacts transmitting the disease to anyone else. The child's immediate household contacts have received these. Nobody else needs to receive antibiotics.

Our thoughts are with the family at this very sad time.

– A Public Health England spokeswoman

'Lonely people need more support' - researchers' study

Researchers call for more support for lonely people

Researchers at the University of Kent say that councils and health trusts should work together to identify and help lonely people.

In a new report published this week, the 'Campaign to End Loneliness' suggests that feeling isolated can be as harmful to health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day, and that people who are experiencing severe loneliness may visit their GP more often, and enter residential care earlier.

The group is calling for authorities to use existing data to locate the most lonely or isolated residents - through 'loneliness maps' - so they can be offered the appropriate support services.


Hayley's mum pays tribute to 'typical teenager with extraordinary disease'

Hayley Okines' mum has added to hundreds of tributes been paid to her daughter who died on Thursday.

Hayley, who's 17, had the rare genetic condition 'Progeria' - meaning that she aged about 8 times faster than usual for a human being.

A video released celebrating Hayley's life has been published on Facebook here.

Hayley Okines was a typical teenager but with an extraordinary disease. Born with progeria her life was shared across the globe in TV documentaries and in her two books, Old Before My Time and Young at Heart. This short video celebrates a life well lived.

– Kerry Okines
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