Parents welcome NHS 'yes' to life-changing op

Parents welcome NHS 'yes' to life-changing op

Parents welcome NHS 'yes' to life-changing op

First published in News Essex County Standard: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

PARENTS who raised £50,000 so their disabled daughter can undergo privately-funded life changing surgery have welcomed the news it’s been made available on the NHS.

Roxi Aldrich’s parents launched a campaign in May last year to raise the cash so she could have Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) in the US.

The procedure is aimed at reducing tight and stiff muscle tone in the legs and is used for some children like Roxi, who are born with cerebral palsy.

The op will mean Roxi, three, of New Town, Colchester, will not spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair or relying on a walking frame.

Last month her parents reached their fundraising target and booked Roxi in for the operation on September 26, which can now be performed privately in London.

Although today's announcement by the NHS won’t change what’s planned for Roxi, dad Joe said it was “fantastic” news for other children needing the operation.

He said: “We have put so much hard work in to raise the funds for Roxi.

“The fact it wasn’t available on the NHS before was quite shocking.”

Mr Aldrich, 28, added: “My understanding of this was because it was relatively new surgery - it is only about 25 years old - and the majority of people have had it done in the states, the NHS wouldn’t accept the findings and say this is a good treatment.

“But because they have started doing it in the UK via private funding, they have been able to say this does work.”

The operation takes hours so requires a high amount of hospital trust resources and the intense recovery period is several weeks spent in hospital afterwards.

However, Mr Aldrich questioned whether the NHS would fund the physiotherapy needed for post-operative patients in the years afterwards.

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