Derry mum raising funds to support life-changing trip to US for little Patrick

Little Patrick.Little Patrick.
Little Patrick.
The mother of a two-year-old Derry boy who needs specialised treatment to correct a chronic back problem is asking for help to fund a life-altering trip to the US.

Nikita Burke, whose family are from Creggan but now lives in Cornshell Fields, hopes to accompany her son, Patrick, to a clinic in the US where he will be fitted with a special cast to correct his Scoliosis.

Scoliosis is a condition in which the spine twists and curves to the side. It can affect people of any age, from babies to adults.

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Nikita says the cost of the treatment and their travel to and from Philadelphia has already been covered.

But there will be considerable expenses incurred in staying in the city while the treatment takes place and she is appealing to the generous Derry public for support.

“The sooner the treatment can take place the better,” says Nikita. “His condition has worsened over the past few months and this innovative cast will make such a difference to his life.

“As it stands, if his back isn’t corrected now, he will have to undergo a series of operations until he is an adult. This new procedure avoids all that.

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“A number of other children from Northern Ireland have already travelled to the US and had the procedure completed successfully - but it can only be done on infants so it is important Patrick is treated as soon as possible.”

The new cast treatment is, as yet, not available in Northern Ireland, although the Health Minister is currently being lobbied to introduce it.

Nikita intends to host a number of fundraising events over the next few weeks.

The first will take place in Bishop’s, Central Library, Creggan on Monday, July 11.

She has also created a fundraising page online.