Dear All, I've written a short letter for the local news media which you are very welcome to use in your local area - or alter it as you see fit. ALTZHEIMERS VICTORY A landmark ruling by the Ombudsman in Cambridgeshire will entitle thousands of suffers from Altzheimers Disease to claim up to 100% compensation for care fees from NHS Trusts throughout the UK, as reported in an article on 2 Feb 2004 by the Daily Mail's Medical Correspondent, Jenny Hope. According to the editorial, Barbara Pointon's husband was diagnosed with AD 12 years ago and given 7 years to live. Mrs Pointon had to take early retirement from her teaching post as Head of Music at Cambridge University's Homerton College in order to give full time care to her husband. Previously her husband, Malcom was a Senior Lecturer at the College but had to relinquish his position after being afflicted with Altzheimers Disease at the early age of 51 years. Doctors have attributed Mr Pointon's longevity to his wife's constant care and support for him at home, which has until now been funded almost entirely from their private finances and with limited additional funding from Social Services and falling short of the total amount required by some £1500 per month. Mrs Pointon said that their financial situation was in dire straits due to being forced to take early retirements and substantially reduced pensions. Mrs Pointon has been unceasingly crusading for free care for AD sufferers for the past four years and this ruling means that her husband will now be entitled to 100% NHS funded care fees at home, at £1000 per week. The ruling by the Ombudsman in Cambridgeshire means that other NHS Trusts will be compelled to offer care funding or risk investigation. Many Altzheimers sufferers are severely mentally disabled and unable to be left alone as they tend to wander and cannot recognise dangerous situations. They also suffer from panic attacks when parted from their partners or long term carers, as well as being unable to wash, clothe or feed themselves without constant assistance. Until now, the NHS has not recognised the severe pyschological disabilities of people suffering from Altzheimers Disease and care funding has never been available for them. This landmark ruling will hopefully ensure that the huge burden of financial responsibility is no longer resting upon family members and devoted carers alone. Families who care for sufferes of Altzheimers Disease should be encouraged by Mrs Pointon's victory to lobby their local MP and NHS Trust to request similar funding as soon as possible.