Last week cancer bloggers, tweeters and patients united to make medical history in the House of Lords – at a Google Hangout in support of Maurice Saatchi’s Medical Innovation Bill.
Together we launched the Saatchi Bill public consultation – backed by the Department of Health and Secretary of State @Jeremy_Hunt.
The Bill will allow patients to ask for – and doctors to deliver – new and innovative medical treatments for rare and hard-to-cure diseases without fear of being sued.
The Government backs our Bill – and promises to pass it into law, if the public consultation is successful.
It all hangs in the balance right now. Nothing is certain.
But if the response we got from those in the room who came to hear Maurice Saatchi, patients, families and professors speak up for the Bill is anything to go by, we have a fighting chance.
You joined us in a Google Hangout and heard the arguments of Debbie Binner who lost her daughter, Chloë to a rare bone cancer, to Chloë’s best friend Mike Thomas and to Mavis Nye who is dying of mesothelioma.
They all want the Bill. They want innovation – not the endless repetition of failed medical treatments.
After the Hangout, #SaatchiBill twitter and blog conversations went ballistic. We want more of that and we want hundreds of people to respond to the government’s public consultation so that no politician can say the Bill is not needed or wanted.
As Mavis Nye told the room: “I’m terminally ill. I shouldn’t have to chase treatment. My oncologist can only give me what’s laid down by the national health system. I back this innovation Bill. I want it and I want it today – because I might not be here tomorrow.”