Hello everyone, and thank you for reading this post.

My mother is eighty years old, disabled, and lives alone in South Staffordshire.

She had been attending as an outpatient a severe pain clinic at Gobowen hospital in Shropshire, (the neighbouring county, as there was no similar service closer to home) for a number of years. She had very strong injections there, initially every three months, but that rose to four months as a doctor left, and no replacement was made. She felt a great benefit to her pain for a month or so, and as the injection wore off, so her pain became stronger. That extra months wait made a huge difference to her health, so that by the time she was seen again she was constantly in tears with the pain and felt it impossible to find any comfortable position to lie or sit.

No other treatment provided relief. Her lower discs have completely crumbled, giving her lumbar region little or no support (i have seen the MRI scans and been with her when speaking to specialists about potential surgery).

She also has spinal arthritis, and osteoporosis. Her condition started in her twenties after an accident, and has been a constant throughout her life. She has had every type of treatment - physiotherapy, osteopathy etc.. all to no avail. My father died fairly young, and with raising a family with no extended family support, and a lifetime working, surgery was not an option. As she aged surgery also wasn't an option due to her age, and the diabetes and blood pressure problems that came later. With these problems and the condition of her back, any surgery would be complicated, and large - most likely a huge fusion going up from her lumbar (lower) into the thoracic (upper) back, the success rate would be deemed at best 50%. In short, these injections - as little as they were, were all she had.

A fortnight ago, she was informed that the clinic is to close, and her injections would cease as the Government would allocate money elsewhere.

To say she was devastated is an understatement. My mom has always been a stoical, stiff upper lip 'crack on with it' person, but now she looks like a shell of that person, as she realises what lies ahead. Namely, incessant pain, being housebound, curled up in a ball, no life, with only a daily worsening of her situation, until the end of her days. She has openly talked (pragmatically, not emotionally) about taking her own life.

My mother is a good, proud person who always worked - even through chronic pain, volunteered to help others, and comes from a family where public service was paramount, from the armed forces to the emergency services, to make a better country better for all. This truly pains her, as she realises that that duty of care/reciprocal unwritten honour, to look after one another has been so disdainfully discarded.

My question to you all (and PLEASE respond if you can) is - Is there not a way this can be overturned?. Is there not a legal definition of patient/citizen duty of care at all?- an actual paragraph somewhere that can be used for her defence.

My sister and i are due to see her MP in a fortnight. Ideally, i would love some information prior to going into that meeting, so again please reply if you can.

I promise that i will return at a later date, with any information gathered, that could help others on this or a similar matter.

Many thanks in advance, and good luck to all of you with you and your families health and concerns.

Very kind regards.

Mark.