Experts accuse NHS of “jeopardising” Ashya King’s care
Child cancer experts have accused the NHS of “jeopardising” the recovery of five-year-old Ashya King by paying for his proton therapy abroad.
Ashya was treated for six weeks at a proton beam centre in the Czech Republic instead of having radiotherapy in Southampton following his surgery.
Leading doctors wrote to the NHS saying the decision could “result in the tragedy of children not being cured”.
The authors of the letter stated: “We have profound reservations regarding the ongoing clinical management of this child and feel that actual harm may have been done by jeopardising the chance of a cure.”
The experts say it is vital that children with conditions like Ashya’s are given radiotherapy within four to six weeks of surgery and that the decision would undermine confidence in the system and cause “chaos” in the management of children’s cancers in the UK and a “free-for-all” among other parents.
The letter was sent to NHS chief executive Simon Stevens and other NHS heads and read: “It is not unreasonable to suggest this may result in the tragedy of children not being cured when they should have been.”
Ashya is now in a hospital in Spain accompanied by his mother.