Editor's comment: Refusing to pay for surgery is scandalous
JACK Rooke is the latest in a series of children who we have featured needing an operation to allow them to walk unaided. That surgery can be carried out in a National Health Hospital, by NHS staff. And yet in each case the friends and family of the children involved have had to raise at least £31,000 to pay for it.
Why? Because the local NHS trusts do not consider the operations important enough. But it in every case the surgery has or will transform the children's lives. Yet the NHS refuse to fund the surgery. And they get away with it because in each case parents, relatives and friends of the children affected have raised the money themselves to pay for the operation.
The absurdity of the NHS's position here is that if they carried out the operation they would save money in the long term. Without it Jack would increasingly need bigger and more sophisticated equipment to get him around.
Or could it be that their decision is an entirely cynical one based on the premise that if they refuse to help then families will come up with the money themselves?
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And even if the decisions are made nationally from April rather than locally what prospects are there for any real change? It could simply be a different group of people turning down requests for help.