Hundreds back nurses campaign

HUNDREDS of people have today added their backing to a campaign to save Ipswich's children's cancer nurses.The town's cash-strapped hospital is proposing to axe one of two specialist nurses that help youngsters with cancer but furious parents have united to display their disgust at the move.

HUNDREDS of people have today added their backing to a campaign to save Ipswich's children's cancer nurses.

The town's cash-strapped hospital is proposing to axe one of two specialist nurses that help youngsters with cancer but furious parents have united to display their disgust at the move.

As revealed in The Evening Star on Tuesday, Sarah Beard who lost her daughter to Chelsie to cancer last month has set up an online petition against the proposals.

Just three days after it was set up the number of signatures has already topped 350, with people from all over the country adding their comments.

Among them was Jenny Mundy, of Ipswich, who wrote: “It's an absolute disgrace that we have to rely on petitions to make the government aware of our plight.

“Children are our future and, surely, we should give them the very best treatment without having to worry about the NHS debts.”

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Charlotte Turnbull, also of Ipswich, said: “This is an outrage, a disgrace, and it should not be allowed to happen.”

The Star has also received letters from parents of children who have been treated by the nurses, including Tracy Osman, whose daughter Milly received treatment for Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia in the late 1990s, and was nominated for the Star's Kid in a Million in 1998.

Mrs Osman, of Brookfield Road, said she was disgusted at the news that the nurses Milly knows and loves could be under threat.

She said: “Milly's 11 now and she has made a good recovery. She had to go back for her annual check up this week and was upset that neither of the nurses were there so it shows what an impact they have made on her.

“It's disgraceful that they can even think about cutting these posts, it's so important to these families to have their support during such an awful time.”

No decisions have been made yet but the proposals to axe one of the nurses' posts is part of a widespread review of specialist nurses throughout the hospital as the hospital battle to get rid of their £24m debt.

Hospital bosses say they have a much higher number of specialist nurses than other hospitals of a similar size.

Will your care be affected by the reduction of specialist nurses? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk>

WEBLINK: To sign the petition go to: http://www.gopetition.com/online/9864.html

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