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Saturday 16 December 2017

HSE asks 'right to die' Marie Fleming for 'proof' of illness for medical card renewal

Marie's partner brands HSE move as 'ludicrous'

Tom and his wife Marie Flemming who is in the final stages of MS. Photo:Mark Condren
Tom and his wife Marie Flemming who is in the final stages of MS. Photo:Mark Condren

The partner of MS sufferer Marie Fleming branded the HSE requiring proof of Ms Fleming's illness as 'ludicrous'.

Speaking on RTE radio this afternoon, Tom Curran said the work involved to prove Ms Fleming (59) is still very ill in order to qualify for a new medical card is taking away from the time he should be spending looking after her.

Numerous letters from the HSE have been reportedly sent to their home over the last few weeks requiring information on Ms Fleming's condition and asking if conditions have changed in order to renew her card.

The saga has been going on since early October and our medical card was due for renewal at the end of November," he said.

"The amount of time being spent dealing with this and the expense involved is absolutely ludicrous. Things haven't changed medically or financially.

"We've both been living on disability and medical allowances. There should have been no questions."

Mr Curran (65) said he made at least four phone calls to the HSE trying to sort the situation out, which he was unable to do until a newspaper reported the incident. The HSE have since released a statement saying Ms Fleming's medical card eligibility would remain.

"They've obviously responded immediately to the media," he said.

Mr Curran said Ms Fleming has "a firm religions belief" but her she does not have the ability to perform miracles.

"It's been a difficult year for Marie. Nobody knows how much time Marie has left. We want to give her quality of life, not argue over something like this.

"She's not going to get better, there's no doubt about that."

Earlier this year, the Supreme Court dismissed an appeal from Ms Fleming, who sought to establish a legal 'right to die'.

Irish Independent

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