Angry Dagenham mum forced to borrow cash to pay for son’s hand op

A couple have had to borrow �2,000 to pay for an operation to remove a painful lump on their toddler’s hand because the NHS said it will not pay for “cosmetic” surgery.

Mum Maxine Payne said the lump – which is a build up of muscle tissue – causes three-year-old Bailey pain when touched.

According to the 24-year-old, her GP at Markyate Surgery, Dagenham, recommended the lump be removed and the family were referred to Queen’s Hospital.

Doctors at Queen’s agreed to carry out the operation, but weeks later Maxine and her partner Steven Jones received a letter to say the NHS would not cover the costs of the surgery. Maxine, of Fitzstephen Road, Dagenham, appealed the decision but lost.

The family are now having to borrow �2,000 from Steven’s mother so they can pay for the operation to be carried out privately later this month.


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Speaking to the Post, Maxine said: “It’s absolutely ridiculous that the NHS are calling his lump a cosmetic matter.

“It hurts when he knocks it or if someone touches it and he’s now struggling to hold a pen because of where it is. He’s left-handed and has recently started to use his right because it’s painful. He’s also becoming embarrassed about it and doesn’t want people to look at his hand.”

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She said the couple were reluctant to borrow money but felt they had no choice.

“I was laid off my job two months ago, so we’re struggling with money and don’t have a spare �2,000,” she explained. “But as we want the operation to happen before he starts school in September we’ve had to borrow. Thankfully my mother-in- law was able to step in and help, but she shouldn’t have to. The NHS should pay for this.”

A spokesman for NHS North East London and the City said the trust could not comment on individual cases but added: “Our role is to ensure that patients get the right treatment, from the right clinicians, when they need it.

“We also have a duty to ensure that we offer value for money services in line with the health needs of the community.

“This means that certain medical procedures need to be considered on a case-by- case basis and some treatments will only be offered to patients who meet the clinical criteria and will benefit from the intervention.”

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