New home joy for MND suf­ferer

The Oban Times - - News - EMMA CRICH­TON ecrich­ton@oban­times.co.uk

A LOCHABER man suf­fer­ing from mo­tor neu­rone dis­ease (MND) has been re-housed in a bun­ga­low af­ter spend­ing a year as a ‘pris­oner’ in his own home.

James McAleer, was con­fined to the ground floor of his house in Caol af­ter he be­came un­able to climb his stairs and had to sleep in a re­cliner chair in his liv­ing room.

The for­mer mixed mar­tial arts and moun­tain bike en­thu­si­ast strug­gled to come to terms with be­ing con­fined to a wheel­chair just a year af­ter be­ing di­ag­nosed with MND and mat­ters were made worse when he was housed in a ‘grossly un­suit­able’ prop­erty.

He said: ‘About a year and a half ago I started drop­ping things, then I started to trip and fall over for no rea­son. My part­ner begged me to see my doc­tor. I was not pre­pared for what was to fol­low. There is no one test that can tell you if you have MND. It is a bat­tery of tests to rule out other con­di­tions till you’re left with MND. In a year I have gone from be­ing an ac­tive man to be­ing con­fined to a wheel­chair. I can no longer walk, I strug­gle to talk, I can no longer eat by my­self, I can no longer wash by my­self.

‘I have been a pris­oner down­stairs in my own home for seven months and had to sleep on a re­cliner chair.’ Mr McAleer was also hav­ing prob­lems re­ceiv­ing ben­e­fits, which has now been sorted.

Mr Thompson, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Bade­noch, said: ‘As some­one suf­fer­ing from the de­bil­i­tat­ing mo­tor neu­rone dis­ease, he was not only housed in grossly un­suit­able cir­cum­stances, but the prob­lems he was en­coun­ter­ing with the Depart­ment for Work and Pen­sions was com­pound­ing his de­spair.

‘Af­ter my of­fice took up the case on be­half of James, with the help of Ian Black­ford and High­land coun­cil, I am de­lighted to re­port he has re­cently been re­lo­cated in a so­cially rented bun­ga­low in Banavie, which is far more suit­able to his spe­cific needs.’

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