Well-wishers donate cancer cash for Leeds patient told to pay up or go elsewhere

Dominic Horsley. PIC: Tony Johnson
Dominic Horsley. PIC: Tony Johnson
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Well-wishers have raised thousands in aid of vital treatment for a cancer patient who was told to pay £1,400 for chemotherapy in Leeds or go elsewhere.

The YEP revealed that Dominic Horsley, from Woodlesford, was asked to pay for the life-extending course of Docetaxel chemo by Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTH) last month – despite being recommended it by a senior consultant.

Since then the 41-year-old’s parents have paid for the treatment but supporters have set up a crowdfunding page, which has raised more than £2,100 so far, in a bid to reimburse them.

Meanwhile his mother Dee Horsley is asking LTH for answers over why his advanced prostate cancer diagnosis took so long and why there is an apparent “postcode lottery” in Docetaxel funding.

She has also sent complaints to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt and Prime Minister David Cameron over the issue.

So far 74 people have donated to the crowdfunding page created by his friend Helen Monnelly. She said it will help “an amazing, fun-loving person”.

Dominic, who is having his second dose of chemo this week, said: “It’s just amazing and makes you feel loved. Anything over the amount we are giving to prostate cancer research charities.”

In September an MRI scan revealed he had a grade nine tumour that had spread to his leg and pelvis – five months after going to specialists at St James’s Hospital with symptoms.

Despite his father having the disease in his 60s, Dominic claims he was told he was “too young” to have prostate cancer and was misdiagnosed. He now feels younger men with symptoms should demand scans.

He added: “We want people to be able to go to Leeds if it’s proven it (Docetaxel) can extend somebody’s life.”

A consultant recommended Docetaxel but after arriving for his first dose Dominic was told he faced a £1,400 bill or could have the treatment free in Huddersfield or Manchester.

LTH has apologised about the lack of clarity surrounding the need to pay and said that NHS England does not routinely pay for Docetaxel. A spokesman said discussions continue with the family and the Trust “will investigate any matters they feel remain unresolved”.

Last month NHS England said it was awaiting the results of a new study but in the meantime “routes remain open” for doctors with “exceptional” cases.