The Department of Health has finally agreed to look at a Treatment Abroad funding application for cancer survivor Shauntelle Tynan.
Hundreds of thousands of euro had to be fundraised in 2016 for Shauntelle to receive treatment in Texas Children’s Hospital in the US for a rare form of cancer.
The young woman, from Tullow, Co Carlow, captured people's hearts with her emotional appeal for public funds so she could undergo pioneering treatment in which €750,000 was raised.
Ms Tynan suffered from the rare cancer Hystiocytosis-x and her entire family - including her mum Leona, her partner Garth, her younger sister Sophie and brother Stephen - were forced to relocate while she underwent almost 18 months of treatment.
The Government’s Treatment Abroad Scheme only covers European countries so Shauntelle’s family were not able to receive any State help with the costs.
She returned home from the US last November after being declared cancer-free by doctors. However, she will have to travel back every six months for check-ups and tests.
Shauntelle’s mother, Leona, said: “After year’s of trying, the Department have now agreed to look at her case.” The Department have confirmed they are reviewing her case.
If the Department agrees to fund her, they could be opening the door to hundreds of thousands of similar applications.
While receiving specialist cancer treatment Shauntelle and her family were left stranded in their apartment complex following the flooding disaster caused by Hurricane Harvey in 2017, but they made it to safety after several hours thanks to the help of emergency services.
The teenager, who has been on nearly 50 tablets a day, has spoken openly about how her cancer has impacted on her short life and was diagnosed in May 2015. Since that diagnosis, her cancer had spread to her gastrointestinal system, colon and skin.