NHS shortfall forces toddler's parents to pay £300 for special chair after hip operation

LITTLE Amelie Gledhill faced spending eight weeks lying on her back because of an NHS equipment shortfall.

After surgery for a dislocated hip, the 17-month-old, of Fern Rise, Elland, was left with a cast that meant she could not sit up.

Her parents, Anne and Jon, say their baby girl would have had to spend the eight-week recovery period lying down if they had not shelled out 288 for a specially-adapted chair.

"My eldest daughter, Georgie, had the same operation eight years ago and we were able to borrow a special car seat, high chair and pram," said Mrs Gledhill.

"Physios and occupational therapists tried to help us but said their hands were tied as there was no budget for this kind of equipment.

"We were forced to buy the chair so she could have some quality of life for the next eight weeks."

The couple say there could be dozens of other Calderdale families facing the same problem.

Amelie suffers from Edwards Syndrome – a rare condition that means she has feeding difficulties and delayed physical development. She also has scoliosis, a curved spine.

A spokesman for Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust said: "We always carry out a thorough clinical assessment to ascertain which of the available equipment is most appropriate and helpful and allocate it accordingly. We are always happy to discuss care with families."