Woman fears closure of neuro rehabilitation unit at the Min will affect her health
A woman whose MS has left her unable to control her own movements has spoken of her fears about the closure of the unit.
Nikki Shearn, 48, from Paulton, now does not know where she will have to go for the specialist treatment she needs to cope with her condition.
Thanks to the support of the team at the unit at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases, she is able to live at home but is worried about the future.
She said: "They are so lovely in the unit and the support I continue to get is wonderful.
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"I don't know what I will do when it closes. I won't be able to travel miles to get treatment."
Mrs Shearn was diagnosed with MS 26 years ago, but in the last three years her condition has worsened, leaving her with no control over her body, and she will eventually be unable to talk or eat.
In September, after a flare-up in her condition, she spent seven weeks in the unit, where staff helped her gain control over parts of her body, and got her talking and eating again.
Her husband Ian, 54, said: "Nikki's life has been completely changed thanks to the care and treatment she has received at the unit.
"They have helped her to live a reasonably comfortable life at home, and she has continued to make massive improvements thanks to them.
"We don't know what will happen now that the unit is being closed. We can only hope and pray that Nikki doesn't need that sort of care again, as we don't know where we will be sent. It could be miles away."
Mr Shearn is full of praise for the staff at the unit, and said the care could not be replicated elsewhere.
He said: "The unit is incredible, never in my life have I seen anything like it in a hospital."