Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.59 4 Feb 2020


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The father of a boy who has quadriplegic cerebral palsy says his son has been on a waiting list for surgery four times as long as he should be.

Tony Foley, from Co Kerry, says his 14-year-old son Ronan now needs pain relief during the day.

He has had a curvature at the base of his spine since the age of nine, and requires surgery to correct it.

Ronan is wheelchair-bound and can only be in his wheelchair for an hour or so.

Mr Foley told Lunchtime Live things are finally starting to move in terms of the procedure.

"We were told back in October 2018 that he would probably have surgery in the timeframe of four months, which was in line with what the health minister said - that no child would be waiting more than four months for this procedure at the time".

"We thought the surgery would happen between January and March of 2019 - the year went on [and] there was no sign of this happening".

"We are 17 months and counting".

"In the last week we have got a timeframe for Ronan's operation... we've been told now in the last couple of days he has a provisional date for the 12th of March now for surgery.

"We also got a call from Crumlin Hospital yesterday to say that he has got a pre-op appointment scheduled for next Monday - we consider that very promising and very positive news".

"We're very angry because we were of the impression that it would be in the timeframe of four months that our son would have that operation - and it's four and a half times four months now at the moment.

"If you need an operation you need it now - you don't need it in a year and a half after being diagnosed for an operation".

Mr Foley said his family are not the only ones in this situation.

"We have no issue with our local service or with Crumlin Hospital".

"We're not the only people with children like Ronan in this country... there's probably other people knocking on doors like we are trying to achieve the very same objective that we're trying to achieve today".


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Cerebral Palsy Crumlin Hospital Lunchtime Live Quadriplegic Ronan Foley Spinal Operation Surgery Tony Foley

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