Entry in online diary: Death by Attrition

Update: 24 April 2004

We have now had the letter from the NHS regarding Alan’s case for funding. The letter is different to the telephone con­versation last Tuesday. In the conversation Alan was told that the appeal was dropped and that funding would be available for the USA. The letter now says that the appeal is suspended pending three further opinions on whether surgery can be done in this country. Those opinions will be in Leicester, Birmingham and Oxford.


Alan has already been seen by the top man at Leicester! – Professor Sir Peter Bell, who is now retired – so presumably we’re going to meet up again with one of his underlings … the one who said ‘You do know this aneurysm is going to kill you, don’t you?’

We have gone full circle and are now being sent back to the beginning! Well, heck, it’s only taken 13 months to do that ... so what’s another few months for a dying man? Clearly this is going to take even more time now and cause even more undue delay. I can only assume that the NHS are stalling for time because they know Alan will die soon without surgery and it will be an end to their problems. That’s what they think … because as far as I’m concerned it’s only the BEGINNING of their prob­lems. If it’s the last thing I do in my life I’m going to win this.

Yesterday I decided it was high time to get the national press involved and get this sorry tale out in the open. The Daily Mirror, and our local newspaper, will be covering our story in the next few days. We have also written a strong letter telling the NHS why we don’t want these opinions (especially as it’s not even a requirement in their own Policy Document!) and we’ve also asked our lawyer and MP Tim Boswell to intervene, both of whom are firmly on our side.

Hopefully, this will all serve to speed up the process so that we can go to Chicago without much more delay but the clock isn’t going to stop ticking … So much for our 11th-hour NHS ‘Death Row’ reprieve.