Abbey to undergo vital medical tests

A little girl with a complex bowel condition is to under- go vital medical tests at Great Ormond Street this weekend.

On Thursday, there had been concern that Abbey Murphy, 7, from Ballyvolane in Cork, would not be able to travel for the tests after it emerged that the hospital cannot accept funding from the HSE’s treatment abroad scheme for private patients.

The little girl suffers from a distressing condition which causes her to vomit faeces.

Abbey’s grandmother, Kathleen Weir, outlined the family’s plight on The Neil Prendeville Show on Cork’s Red FM on Wednesday and claimed the HSE would not release the funds.

Moved by Abbey’s plight, listeners pledged €22,000 within an hour, but all of the money has yet to be transferred.

However, Minister for Health Simon Harris contacted RedFM yesterday evening to confirm that arrangements had been made to allow Abbey to travel to Great Ormond Street this weekend. It is understood that she and her family flew to London this morning.

“Abbey will receive all the treatments she needs as planned and scheduled in Great Ormond Street Hospital. The arrangements to facilitate this have been made between the Children’s Hospital Group here and Great Ormond Street Hospital.

“There will be no need for outside funding as pledged by the very generous listeners to RedFM. Contact has been made with Abbey’s family and we all send Abbey our very best wishes,” said Mr Harris.

Abbey was diagnosed at the age of three with a diaphragmatic hernia — a hole in the diaphragm which allows the abdominal organs to move into the chest cavity.

She underwent surgery to repair it, but has endured the complex bowel condition for almost five years.

A consultant at Great Ormond Street told Abbey’s family in February that she needs specialist tests at the hospital to determine future medical treatment, and that the tests should be done as soon as possible.


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