All About Multiple Sclerosis

More MS news articles for January 2003

Docs said I'd be dead last Xmas;

but Jason survives crippling illness

December 16, 2002, Tuesday
The Mirror
Nick Henegan

TERMINALLY-ILL Jason Powell has stunned doctors by surviving a crippling illness - a year after he was told he would die.

Multiple sclerosis sufferer Jason, 34, was told it would be a miracle if he saw LAST Christmas.

But now he is looking forward to celebrating another festive season, and yesterday he beamed: "I love proving doctors wrong." The former steel fitter will be enjoying Christmas again at home with his family in Whitland, west Wales.

He said yesterday: "The doctors told me I wouldn't survive until last Christmas but I did and now I'm looking forward to this year.

"I've been fighting since I was diagnosed at 17 and I want to get better."

Last year Jason took Dyfed Powys Health Authority to court after they told him he had to die in hospital because caring for him at home was too expensive.

When they reached the High Court the authority backed down.

Now sports fan Jason is hoping to get a new wheelchair in the New Year to help him move around his specially-adapted flat.

He said: "I'm going to have tests in January and by next Christmas I'll be in a wheelchair."

Jason, who has recruited pals to create a massive display of Christmas lights outside his home, added: "I'm hoping to win the Whitland Christmas decorations competition.

"I've been planning it for months and my friends and carers have been fantastic."

Before Jason's legal fight medical chiefs at West Wales General Hospital said they would give him 24-hour care if he stayed in a nursing home.

But Jason wanted the dignity of spending his last days at home surrounded by family and friends.

Now he gets 24-hour professional care at home.

He added: "I'm always going to keep fighting and I will never give up.

"There is always a tomorrow."

His mum Eileen Olive said Jason's amazing survival made the court battle worthwhile.

She said: "We are all so glad that he is still with us. He is happy here at home and gets great care.

"He was in hospital for nine-and-a-half months and it was hell for him.

"Having him here with his friends and family close by is what we fought for."

© Copyright 2002 MGN Ltd