Saturday, 22 December 2012

Cancer boy relieved

Neon Roberts father ‘relieved’ over cancer treatment verdict

Ben Roberts said he hopes the seven-year-old can start the radiotherapy and chemotherapy ‘without any further delay’ after the High Court ruled he should undergo the treatment.

Sally Roberts, 37, had opposed Neon receiving the follow-up medical care after successive successful surgeries on a brain tumour, arguing it could cause long-term health issues.

Seven-year-old Neon Roberts (Picture: PA)
After the hearing Mr Roberts’ solicitor, Gwen Williams, said: ‘Mr Roberts is relieved that the judge has been able to make a final ruling on Neon’s treatment.

‘Whilst he respected Neon’s mother’s view, his own opinion, following in-depth discussion with the doctors, has always been that Neon should have the treatment as outlined by them.

‘He now hopes that Neon can be allowed to recover from his latest operation and start the radiotherapy and chemotherapy that the doctors have outlined without any further delay.’

Ms Roberts argued there were ‘credible alternatives’ to the treatment, even though doctors say Neon could die within a few months without radiotherapy.

Summing up, Mr Justice Bodey said: ‘One can’t enjoy a quality of life if one isn’t alive.

‘The mother has been through a terrible time. This sort of thing is every parent’s nightmare.

‘But I am worried that her judgement has gone awry on the question of the seriousness of the threat which Neon faces.’

He added: ‘The alternative treatments put forward were complementary and alternative medicine. Nothing put forward has undergone rigorous clinical trials.

‘I find it difficult to see that doctors would withhold alternative treatment that would improve survival.’

Ms Roberts said she plans to appeal the decision.

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