Baldock single mother wanting mastectomy to prevent breast cancer return feels let down by NHS

Polly, Breea and Alfie.

Polly, Breea and Alfie. - Credit: Archant

A single mother from Baldock who wants to have a second mastectomy to prevent the return of breast cancer says she feels let down after claiming the NHS has refused to grant her wish.

Polly Simpson was diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2012 and underwent a mastectomy and chemotherapy at Bedford Hospital while pregnant with her second child.

After giving birth to her son Alfie in April of last year, the 37-year-old received more chemotherapy and made the decision that she wanted to have her other breast removed to prevent the cancer returning. However, after testing negative for the BRAC 1 and 2 gene which confirmed she is not a gene carrier, she says her request for the surgery has been refused by the NHS.

Miss Simpson has not been put off however, and is determined to have the operation which she feels will give her more of a chance to see her four-year-old daughter, Breea, and Alfie, now 16 months old, grow up.

“I was treated at Bedford Hospital and I cannot fault them one bit, but I really feel let down by the NHS and the funding system,” said Miss Simpson, who was living in Sandy when she had the mastectomy but has since moved back to Baldock.


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“Especially when you get young ladies having breast enlargements on the NHS because they feel inadequate, whilst for me having breast cancer has given me emotional and psychological turmoil. That makes me really cross as I’m always hearing about famous people getting these breast enlargements, whereas all I want to do is to feel normal again.

“I really don’t want to give up the fight and I am so determined to get my other breast removed, but I feel like I have no-one to turn to. It really has been an emotional rollercoaster trying to get this sorted.”

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Miss Simpson wants to have the surgery at Bedford Hospital as that is where all her treatment has taken place, and does not wish to be transferred.

She said: “I know women in the Cambridgeshire area in the same situation who have been granted the treatment. I feel like it’s a postcode lottery. It has been a nightmare trying to fight this battle to stop this cancer recurring. I just want to do all I can to be here to see my kids grow up.”

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