Don't Dilly Dally Rally
The 4th May 2011 was a beautiful spring day, and the occasion on which a small group of enthusiastic supporters of CCSVI (venous insufficiency in the head and neck) gathered outside the Department of Health Headquarters in Whitehall for a rally organised by MS-CCSVI-UK.
They made the (for some) heroic effort because they feel strongly that people with the MS label should have the same equal right to NHS investigation, treatment and follow up of their vascular condition as other people.
Through research by a number of the group, they had discovered that people with Venous Insufficiency were regularly and safely treated with angioplasties in our hospitals. The acceptable risk of the procedure is one death in a hundred. The only reason, it appears, that people who have been diagnosed with multiple scars on the central nervous system (Multiple Sclerosis) are denied this treatment is because this treatment is not considered safe for them. How can this be safe for some people and not for others; especially as only two deaths have occurred in some 20,000 CCSVI treatments?
Andrew Lansley stopped to speak to the group on his return to his office from a meeting with the Prime Minister. Several people had a chance to explain what they wanted from the Department and the event was filmed for posterity. Mr Lansley appeared interested in their message but repeated the same thing the DoH has been saying for the past 18 months, namely: that the treatment had not been verified as safe for people with MS.
After two hours of good humoured demonstrating the group repaired to the local pub and debriefed over a well-earned drink and mutual congratulations.