Mark Norton is seven years old and two years ago was diagnosed with arthritis however, he is still waiting for treatment.
Mark had problems with his health from birth and missed development markets for his speech and movement.
Mark’s mother Lorna told Newstalk about how this diagnosis impacts Mark’s life:
“He suffers from chronic pain, chronic fatigue”, she said.
“For example we were on holidays recently and he was in the swimming pool playing around like a happy, normal 7-year-old boy; and the next day he wasn’t able to move, he was so tired”.
“We had to bring him round in a buggy all day because he’s too heavy for us to carry now”.
“At seven, he’s mortified that he’s in a buggy – but it’s either a buggy or a wheelchair”.
Two years later Mark is still waiting on physiotherapy for his arthritis.
And Mark isn’t alone, 478 other children are waiting for treatment also.
With roughly one third waiting for over a year despite best practice dictating all children should be treated within six weeks.
Head of campaigning for Arthritis Ireland, Stephanie Casey spoke on Newstalk also and said that it wouldn’t be very expensive for the new government to make significant improvements on the lives of hundreds of children.