'Bionic' MP Craig Mackinlay was two hours away from death in sepsis ordeal

Watch: Craig Mackinlay MP tells ITV News Meridian's Sangeeta Bhabra he would've died if he had not got to hospital sooner on the day he returned to the House of Commons for the first time since becoming a quadruple amputee

Conservative MP Craig Mackinlay, who had his feet and arms were amputated after developing sepsis, has told ITV News he would be dead if he didn't get to hospital.

The South Thanet MP returned to Parliament for the first time since he was rushed into hospital on 28 September last year where he was put into a 16-day induced coma with his wife told he had only a 5% chance of survival.

On Wednesday, MPs from across the House rose to their feet as Mr Mackinlay entered the chamber, and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer was seen welcoming him back with a handshake.

Conservative frontbencher Julia Lopez said: "Welcome back to the honourable friend for South Thanet, what an appropriate way to walk in on science questions, for the new bionic MP."

Watch: Conservative MP Craig Mackinlay is given a standing ovation in Parliament on his return to the House of Commons following his quadruple amputation

Speaking to ITV News, the 57-year old father of one said he didn't feel particularly unwell leading up to being rushed to hospital. He said,

"We were due to go on holiday the next day I felt a little bit unwell but just saw that as a precursor of something. Nothing unusual about that.

"I went to sleep but then woke up was very violently sick. By morning, my wife was saying I looked white as a sheep.

"My hands were cold, my arms were cold. She couldn't feel a pulse and she felt that something was very wrong.

"Within about half an hour of being in the hospital, I ended up blue head to toe and that was a full effect of sepsis coming in.

"They got me at the goldilocks time, two hours before they would have said, 'you're not ill enough to be here', but two hours later I'd have been dead."

Watch: Speaker of the House, Sir Lindsay Hoyle MP pays tribute to Craig Mackinlay MP followed by the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak

Mackinlay received a standing ovation as he made his first appearance in the House of Commons since his sepsis ordeal.

Sir Keir Starmer thanked Craig Mackinlay for his "deep sense of service" as the Conservative MP returned to the Commons.

The Labour leader said: "I want to begin by saying a few words to the member for Thanet South.

"Firstly thank you for meeting me privately this morning with your wife and daughter so I could personally convey my best wishes to all of you.

"Secondly, on some occasions and there aren't many, this House genuinely comes together as one and we do so today to pay tribute to your courage and determination in not only coming through an awful ordeal, but by being here today with us in this chamber.

"And thirdly I want to acknowledge your deep sense of service. I think politics is about

service, and resuming your duties as an MP, being here today, shows us - it is an example for all of us - of your deep sense of service and we thank you for it."

Reacting to the response he received when entering the Commons, Mackinlay said,

"Eight months has gone by since I've been in this office and it looks much the same.

"It is strange. It doesn't feel like any time has gone by, frankly. And to be back in the chamber was very special. But to see all the friends walking through is wonderful.

Craig Mackinlay MP with his daughter Olivia in hospital following his quadruple amputation after developing sepsis Credit: Craig Mackinlay

Adjusting to his new limbs has been difficult but Mackinlay hopes his journey will prevent others from experiencing the same outcome.

"The difficult things are still going upstairs, that's still hard, and coming down stairs is even harder and slopes are difficult as well.

"We get the marks very soon, which will have a movable ankle, so it makes slopes up and down that much easier. So it's going to be a long process.

"It's for people, for families and friends to to recognise it [sepsis] early because most people have a few days where they're feeling progressively worse.

"Quite common is you don't pass water for 24 hours. These indicative signs, I don't think people are fully aware of.

"If I can get a bit of awareness, if I can prevent someone else ending up like me or prevent the death, I'll see that as a job well done.

Craig Mackinlay has been an MP since 2015 Credit: PA

The MP is determined to fight the next election in his Kent constituency, due to be renamed Thanet East.

Sepsis is a life-threatening reaction to an infection that occurs when the immune system overreacts and starts to damage the body’s tissues and organs.

Mr Mackinlay started his political career in the early 1990s, briefly leading the United Kingdom Independence Party (Ukip) before leaving to join the Conservative Party in 2005.

Have you heard our podcast Talking Politics? Every week Tom, Robert and Anushka dig into the biggest issues dominating the political agenda…