Harvey Thompson, 4, set to fly to America for lifesaving radiotherapy treatment on tumour

Harvey Thompson, four, is set to fly to the United States for lifesaving treatment

At the fundraising event at the The Quaker Wood pub are, left, Dave Thompson holding Harvey, Kerrie Thompson, right, with Savannah, Charlotte Morgan, back left and Sally Minskip

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York Press: Photograph of the Author by

A FOUR-YEAR-OLD from York is set to fly out for lifesaving treatment in America this weekend.

Harvey Thompson, of Foxwood, was found to have a tumour the size of an orange on his brain in January and he underwent an urgent 13-hour operation to remove it.

The Woodthorpe School pupil is now awaiting confirmation that he will fly out to Oklahoma for a specialised form of radiotherapy on Saturday, to safely remove the final part of the tumour from his brain stem.

While the NHS is due to fund the treatment, money gathered through a remarkable fundraising effort, which has now reached nearly £15,000, will cover living costs for Harvey, his dad and grandad while they are in America for about ten weeks, as well as helping other families.

Dave Thompson, Harvey’s dad, said it was a very worrying time for the family.

He said: “Because we’ve been waiting a while we want to get there and get it done now.

“There’s no certainty he will come back totally cured and we don’t know about the side effects. There are no certainties over how he is going to be because he will be put under general anaesthetic for each radiotherapy session.”

Harvey was diagnosed with ependymoma, a tumour of the nerve cells and cells that support and protect the nerve cells in the brain, after having a scan to work out why he had no appetite.

The proton radiotherapy – which is not available in the UK – has been suggested by doctors as the least risky option as the small remainder of the tumour is on his brain stem and the treatment is likely to cause fewer side-effects for Harvey, who has autism.

Mr Thompson will accompany his son with his father, Frank. Harvey’s mum, Kerrie, and 22-month-old sister, Savannah, will stay in York.

An incredible fundraising effort by wellwishers had yesterday raised £14,600 as part of an appeal which has been so successful, it is due to become a registered charity to help other families in similar positions.

About £5,000 of this will support Harvey and his family while in the US, but the rest of money will remain within the fund, Mr Thompson said.

Among the events to have been held was a charity night at the Quaker Wood in Woodthorpe, which raised £2,300.

Forthcoming events include a celebrity charity football match for Harvey’s fund and IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Services) in Tadcaster at 2pm this Sunday when Caritas FC will take on a celebrity team due to be made up of members from TOWIE, Big Brother and East 17. For more information, visit foxfc.com

• To donate, visit gofundme.com/6gl824 or a paypal account for donations is at harveysfund@hotmail.co.uk

Comments (6)

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11:56am Wed 26 Feb 14

CHISSY1 says...

Good luck to the little lad.Why does he have to go to America for the treatment?.The treatment should and could be available in this country,why isnt it.
Good luck to the little lad.Why does he have to go to America for the treatment?.The treatment should and could be available in this country,why isnt it. CHISSY1
  • Score: 11

1:28pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Major Bloodnok says...

How right you are CHISSY1......why should family and friend have to appeal for money to help. I find it heart breaking to see this.....what happened to the NHS .....GOD help us
How right you are CHISSY1......why should family and friend have to appeal for money to help. I find it heart breaking to see this.....what happened to the NHS .....GOD help us Major Bloodnok
  • Score: 4

3:43pm Wed 26 Feb 14

caritasfc says...

Please note the venue for the charity event is not Copmanthorpe, but at Tadcaster Albions ground.....there is also a large fun fair running from Friday Night 6pm, Saturday Day and also Sunday at the Car Park of Tadcaster Albions. See www.foxfc.com for full details.
Please note the venue for the charity event is not Copmanthorpe, but at Tadcaster Albions ground.....there is also a large fun fair running from Friday Night 6pm, Saturday Day and also Sunday at the Car Park of Tadcaster Albions. See www.foxfc.com for full details. caritasfc
  • Score: 2

6:43pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Digeorge says...

Good luck young man, hope that it goes OK.

It is so sad that the NHS has to fund or rather the parents have to fund part of it in America when it should be done here in the UK as part of the Rare and Specialist Diseases pot of millions with surgeons trained to do the operations for future generations.

This isn't the first rare condition that children have to fly out to America to have the operation done. At least they have been given the chance whilst others suffer.
Good luck young man, hope that it goes OK. It is so sad that the NHS has to fund or rather the parents have to fund part of it in America when it should be done here in the UK as part of the Rare and Specialist Diseases pot of millions with surgeons trained to do the operations for future generations. This isn't the first rare condition that children have to fly out to America to have the operation done. At least they have been given the chance whilst others suffer. Digeorge
  • Score: 1

9:42pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Rosieposie says...

I think part of the issue is the rarity of this cancer. The best chances of success are the numbers of these procedures a surgeon does, do we have enough to give the required amount of expertise? The USA will have. The fact the NHS is funding this shows it is a recognised treatment. I wish them the best.
I think part of the issue is the rarity of this cancer. The best chances of success are the numbers of these procedures a surgeon does, do we have enough to give the required amount of expertise? The USA will have. The fact the NHS is funding this shows it is a recognised treatment. I wish them the best. Rosieposie
  • Score: 2

9:33am Thu 27 Feb 14

straylandsbloke says...

Rosieposie wrote:
I think part of the issue is the rarity of this cancer. The best chances of success are the numbers of these procedures a surgeon does, do we have enough to give the required amount of expertise? The USA will have. The fact the NHS is funding this shows it is a recognised treatment. I wish them the best.
Could not agree more

Good luck to Harvey
[quote][p][bold]Rosieposie[/bold] wrote: I think part of the issue is the rarity of this cancer. The best chances of success are the numbers of these procedures a surgeon does, do we have enough to give the required amount of expertise? The USA will have. The fact the NHS is funding this shows it is a recognised treatment. I wish them the best.[/p][/quote]Could not agree more Good luck to Harvey straylandsbloke
  • Score: 0

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