Questions need to be asked about NHS – and perhaps case of Ashya King will bring these out

Hurrah – Ashya’s parents are free

But at what cost? Missing Ashya King

  • How much did the ridiculous Police hunt across Europe, pursuing the family of Ashya King cost the British taxpayer?
  • How dare Cameron bolt the stable door, and now offer a cancer expert to advise the family?
  • and Why can’t EVERYONE IN BRITAIN have the same expertise offered when they need it – not just after a massive media campaign?
  • And why did a massive NHS organisation waste so much time hounding the King family, when all they had to do was listen to the father’s very reasonable requestsWatch the family on YouTube, see for yourself, and decide it this isn’t a very articulate, caring and intelligent family, well able to ask Oncologists questions, which they seemed reluctant to answer.

Talk about using a sledge hammer to crack one tiny nut. It will take a long time for the King family to recover from the last week’s trauma, and only goes to show those of us who have experienced the arrogance of British oncologists are not alone.  But these out-of-touch “experts” have plenty of our money to waste – but not to install vital machines.

All this talk about putting the patient first, etc. etc. has proven to be so much hot air, PR Spin etc.

Now, perhaps some good may come of this horrendous episode.  The NHS is chundering along like a Dodo, refusing to acknowledge that other countries have FAR better cancer treatment for their nationals.

Ashya’s father and family are very obviously highly intelligent and literate, and if one thing has shown, information gained from the Internet can point the way to highly safe and effecive treatment, far better than the NHS grudgingly allows us.

World Health Organisation’s low opinion of UK health

Every so often the WHO publishes tables of cancer stats, showing average survival rates in other countries.  In every one for the past decade, Britain has come a humiliating way down the list, often below ex-Iron curtain countries.

With benefit of having had treatment abroad, and seen how effectively it works, I stand up and ask questions at medical conferences about why aren’t we copying X treatment, or when are we going to offer Y ?  Each time there is an embarrassed silence, and nothing is said.

Pathetic Ostrich behaviour

The only downside to going abroad for treatment is the cold shoulder one gets on return.  You come back full of the sensible, effective and marvellous treatment you have had, only to find when you return full of enthusiasm, no-one in UK wants to know.  I found I was put at the back of the list, notes would be “lost”, appointments cancelled at no notice, etc.  Envy is rife, but no-one will admit that treatment you received is probably better than you can get in UK.

This week, Jeremy Hunt – our so-called Secretary of State for Healt – with a massive team of ‘experts’, all subsidised by the huge Government employment scheme, was pitiful by his absence.  One would have expected his appearance in front of TV cameras, giving the Government’s official seal to what was being done by Southampton Hospital to the King family.  Or perhaps (unlikely, as he will be thinking of re-election next Spring), he might even have been brave enough to stand up and question what was being done to hound the King family, and leave a child alone in a foreign hospital.

But no – like all good politicians – he  kept his nose clean and had down, not saying a word.

But it would be good to know how much it cost the British taxpayer in Police time, Crown Prosecution Service admin to make them see sense, Oncologist and other medical staff time to run around demonising a sensible father who had run rings around their ‘experts’, and all the other fal-lals that went on to hound this family.

But in a face-saving exercise, Hunt eventually surfaced to tell ITV the NHS would fly out an expert to see Ashya.  Whatever for?  Case of shutting the stable door etc. surely?  Brett King has run rings round the Southampton staff, and I would think he knows exactly what is best for Ashya.  Either to take up the kind offer from Prague for Proton Beam Therapy, or to drive to Madrid and put him in the care of MD Anderson – world leaders in cancer treatment.  Either way, any so-called NHS expert is going to be woefully in the way.

Well done to the King family, who got their facts 100% spot on, took effective action, and their kids showed mastery over social media.

But sadly, I can’t see Patients getting any more say in their treatment, or cancer services improving in the arrogant NHS.

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