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Dublin: 12 °C Wednesday 3 September, 2014

‘Wonderful news’: Ronan gets medical card back after ‘exhausting’ campaign

Ronan Woodhouse will receive the card within the next seven to 10 days, his mother said.

A YOUNG BOY with Down syndrome whose medical card was removed is to get the card back.

Ronan Woodhouse and his mother Noreen Keane have been campaigning for months for the young boy to get back the card, taking part in rallies and also meeting with politicians to draw attention to his plight.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie in February, Keane had explained that her son had 13 associated conditions to Down syndrome, including a cardiac condition, and it costs around €2,500 a month for his medical needs.

She said at the time that the situation was “absolutely exhausting” and:

makes me question why is it that we as parents, as advocates for our children, have to fight for everything which our children would probably have automatically if they didn’t have Down syndrome. It’s really frustrating.

She had met with the HSE as well as politicians and today came the news that Ronan would get his card back.

In a Facebook post,  Keane said that she had been told that her son’s full card is back and she will receive it in seven to 10 days.

This evening, she told TheJournal.ie that the news was “wonderful news” and a “massive relief”. She was told that the card will be reactivated within 24 hours.

It’s been exhausting and it should never have happened but I’m pleased with the outcome. We stood up and fought the system and the wrong has been righted in so far as they have given back cards.

Keane said she hopes the government  and the HSE have learned “a valuable lesson”.

She also described the support she has received in the campaign – particularly on Facebook – as “overwhelming”.

Though her little boy will now have his medical costs covered again, the fight for adequate resources for children like Ronan is not over.

“Wouldn’t it be great if they listened to the experts and to the parents? But we’ll keep going,” she said.

- With additional reporting by Michelle Hennessy. Originally published 6.20pm

Read: Government “coming across as very anti-disability”, says mum>

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