I’ve had a letter this morning from my MP, Drew Hendry. I’m not easily seduced by power but the House of Commons logo on the envelope; the headed notepaper does add a certain gravitas, no denying it.
Drew Hendry has asked a question about wheelchair guidelines in Scotland of Shona Robison at the Department of Health. She has twenty days to reply. Today’s was a holding letter to let me know enquiries were underway. It’s a good start.
Less thrilling was chasing up The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman. I’d submitted an on line application for him to look into my case a month ago. I thought it was odd that I’d heard zilch. They have no record of receiving my information. This is disappointing. I’d even sent a copy via snail mail. I guess it’s the luck of the draw that mine is the one that gets mislaid in the system.
I’ve received the paper forms. Today I filled everything, in the old fashioned way. It will go in the post later. Reading the paperwork through again from NHS Highland, it reads as complete nuts to me that I haven’t been given a powered chair. Lets hope the Ombudsman agrees. Holds up the precedent set in England and Wales that a powered chair is an appropriate mobility aid for a person who is visually-impaired and uses a guide dog.
I have to say that while all this is going on Guide Dogs are being wonderful; supportive, encouraging and practical. They’re as committed to seeing justice done as I am. I can’t tell you what a difference this makes. It’s terribly hard to explain what my quality of life is like not having a powered chair. It’s everything from keeping going on flare up days when I can barely move. I like to work no matter what as it’s the ultimate distraction from pain; to being able to get out and about without being pushed. It’s lovely having helpful family and friends do this, but it’s wonderful not to require it; expect it. It’s a self-esteem issue as much as anything; the opportunity to be spontaneous; to do things for others as well as myself; it is in essence, my freedom.