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Ashya King’s parents branded “irresponsible” by Stone mother

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: September 01, 2014

Christopher Bond receiving proton beam treatment

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THE mother of a Stone boy who has just had proton beam therapy has branded the actions of Ashya King’s parents “irresponsible”.

Five-year-old Ashya King, who has a brain tumour, was removed by his parents from Southampton General Hospital on Thursday afternoon (August 28) against medical advice.

Mr King said the family wanted to seek proton beam therapy for Ashya - a cancer treatment that the NHS would not provide for his son’s condition.

Meanwhile, the family of Christopher Bond, 10, from Stone, have said they will support moves to see the pioneering cancer treatment brought to the UK.

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Chris is recovering after being treated with proton beam radiation therapy at the ProCure clinic in Oklahoma, which targeted the remains of a tumour at the base of his brain.

Commenting on Ashya’s situation, Chris’ mum, Angharad, said: “I think his parents’ decision to take him out of hospital was irresponsible.

“Proton beam treatment won’t work on all cancers. Like any parent, I would do anything to help my child and I can understand that maybe Ashya’s parents were not thinking clearly. I don’t think the fact they were looking at all possible treatments was wrong, just the decision to remove him from hospital.”

Proton beam therapy is currently only available in the UK to treat eye cancers, but patients with other cancers can apply for NHS funding for therapy abroad.

"We are so lucky to have the NHS," Mrs Bond said. "They have been magnificent throughout and have acted really quickly to get Christopher approved for treatment in the US.”

Ashya’s family travelled to Spain, where they had a holiday home and it is understood they wanted to sell the property to pay for the treatment in the Czech Republic.

An international search was launched, as authorities feared for the boy’s health. He was found with his family in Spain on Saturday and is now in hospital. His parents, Brett and Naghemeh King, are appearing in court in Spain for the first stage of their extradition to the UK.

But there is nothing to suggest they broke any law when they took their son from the hospital.

In a YouTube video, Ashya's brother, Naveed King, said his parents ensured Ashya had the same resources available to him as in the hospital when they took him to Spain.

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