independent

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Severely ill Alexander is given back his medical card

Mary Fogarty

Published 11/06/2014 | 05:22

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The family of Bray boy Alexander Kinne-Coyle (9) have received the news via text message from the HSE that he is to have his discretionary medical card reinstated 42 days after it was taken away.

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Alex's mum Annette said this week that they are still waiting for a new card to be actually issued, but they have confirmed that Alex is 'on the system' after they received a message that directed them to medicalcard.ie, where they input their son's reference number for confirmation that the card was re-instated that day.

Alex, who lives with his family at Glenlucan in Bray, has a rare condition called Mowat Wilson Syndrome. He is profoundly intellectually and physically disabled and his condition will only worsen.

His parents Declan and Annette appeared on television last month explaining that their most basic expenses cost at least €1,100 per month and that is before Alex even sees a doctor. They received notification following that interview that while those expenses would be met, he would not receive a medical or GP card.

They manage his round-the-clock care at home themselves when he is not at school in St. Catherine's or in hospital, as well as running their business together. They also have older children Fionn and Genevieve who are in second level and third level education.

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Dad Declan was happy to get the news from the HSE regarding the re-instatement of the medical card, but said the manner in which it was received - via text message - left them wondering at first whether it was a hoax or real. He said he will be happier when an actual card itself arrives.

He added that they want to get across that it is a 'pointless waste of time' going to the time and expense of re-assessing Alexander annually as his condition will not improve.

He said that while the family is enjoying a 'tempered celebration,' they are also conscious of other children who may not have their cards restored.

'It should never have been taken away in the first place, but out of that disaster came great new friends,' said Declan. Previously, the local man pointed out that 'the strength of a nation is how they look after their most vulnerable.'

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