Brave Bradford dad Donovan O'Brien loses fight for life

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: TRAGIC: Donovan O’Brien, with his wife Debbie. He died at the Bradford Royal Infirmary on Sunday TRAGIC: Donovan O’Brien, with his wife Debbie. He died at the Bradford Royal Infirmary on Sunday

A Bradford dad has died before fundraising friends could get him potentially life-saving treatment which is not available on the NHS.

Although Donovan O’Brien’s friends had raised more than £6,000 towards getting him the drug Alisertib, his condition worsened before he could be treated and he died in Bradford Royal Infirmary on Sunday with his wife Debbie and other family by his side.

The 25-year-old, of Allerton, had been told his only chance of survival was to have a bone marrow transplant, but he had to be in remission first. His family had researched Alisertib and believed it could have helped him get well enough for a transplant but needed £5,440 to pay for it.

Mr O’Brien had been fighting hepatosplenic T-cell non-hodgkins lymphoma (HSTCL), an aggressive form of the disease which affects the spleen and liver.

He had suffered four bouts of chemotherapy without a good response and had another session last Thursday before he deteriorated, said his friend David Lord, who raised £900 by organising a five-a-side tournament and a charity auction and raffle in Eccleshill.

More than 50 of his friends did a sponsored walk from Bradford city centre to Leeds city centre at the end of November and another friend Dorian Smith organised a club night at Sway in Sunbridge Road, Bradford.

Mr Lord, who knew Mr O’Brien since their days at St Bede’s Grammar School, Heaton, said: “Donny never came back out of hospital, he’d gone into have transfusions and needed them constantly. His blood just wasn’t working. He seemed fine enough walking round and chatting when he was having them but he had chemo on Thursday and never got over that. His wife and his mum were with him when he died.”

Mr Lord said he now intends the money he raised to go into a trust fund for his friend’s two-year-old son Riley.

“I’m not sure what will happen to the rest of the money,” he said.

“The family will need time to adjust to their loss before they can start to try and move forward. I know they will want to do good with it.”

Comments (5)

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7:50am Tue 10 Dec 13

tinytoonster says...

tragic.
something wrong when a young man as to die because of such a small amount.
penny pinching at its worst.
tragic. something wrong when a young man as to die because of such a small amount. penny pinching at its worst. tinytoonster

9:15am Tue 10 Dec 13

realcitygent says...

total discrace a young man dying because nhs wouldnt pay 6000 for drugs to give him a fighting chance ,its a different story when they spending millions on immigrants coming to this country for treatment and not charging them ,i honestly believe we have got a great nhs ,but got arseholes running it ,saving a few quid here and there ,,dont treat immigrants unless they can pay ,and spend the money on our own people ,maybe this young man would still be with us now,relly hope the person who knocked the request for help back has nightmares over this so sad
total discrace a young man dying because nhs wouldnt pay 6000 for drugs to give him a fighting chance ,its a different story when they spending millions on immigrants coming to this country for treatment and not charging them ,i honestly believe we have got a great nhs ,but got arseholes running it ,saving a few quid here and there ,,dont treat immigrants unless they can pay ,and spend the money on our own people ,maybe this young man would still be with us now,relly hope the person who knocked the request for help back has nightmares over this so sad realcitygent

9:48am Tue 10 Dec 13

bcfc1903 says...

Shocking story, Mr O'Brien deserved far better treatment !!!!!! There is something seriously wrong when £5,440 is deemed too much for such a life giving treatment. What a sad state of affairs!
Shocking story, Mr O'Brien deserved far better treatment !!!!!! There is something seriously wrong when £5,440 is deemed too much for such a life giving treatment. What a sad state of affairs! bcfc1903

12:38pm Tue 10 Dec 13

Not so simple says...

My thoughts are with the family of this young man. Rest in peace Donovan and may the Lord give your family strength during this period.

I am also disgusted in the manner the NHS has behaved in this matter. I know we have a brilliant NHS but somehow the politicians have messed it up by installing cost saving "business" minded management teams that are only bothered about the bottom line rather then the human beings it is supposed to care for. It is a frightening thought that one day the NHS will be fully privatised and these so called business minded people running the NHS will only ruin the NHS further and cause considerable heartache to those it is supposed to help.

It's about time we as the people of this land put out foot down and demanded the sacking of those who run our NHS....and many other "public services " which are failing the public. Surely this act of cost cutting/money saving in patient care goes against the oath the doctors swear to preserve life. Time we all got value and accountability for the taxes we pay for the provision of the NHS and other services.
My thoughts are with the family of this young man. Rest in peace Donovan and may the Lord give your family strength during this period. I am also disgusted in the manner the NHS has behaved in this matter. I know we have a brilliant NHS but somehow the politicians have messed it up by installing cost saving "business" minded management teams that are only bothered about the bottom line rather then the human beings it is supposed to care for. It is a frightening thought that one day the NHS will be fully privatised and these so called business minded people running the NHS will only ruin the NHS further and cause considerable heartache to those it is supposed to help. It's about time we as the people of this land put out foot down and demanded the sacking of those who run our NHS....and many other "public services " which are failing the public. Surely this act of cost cutting/money saving in patient care goes against the oath the doctors swear to preserve life. Time we all got value and accountability for the taxes we pay for the provision of the NHS and other services. Not so simple

6:10pm Tue 10 Dec 13

Lianne&Hayley says...

I agree, am so ashamed of the NHS for not helping Donny, as I believe that if he was given this treatment earlier he would be still here and had a good chance, but Instead his friends & family raised the funds by doing fund raising and managed to raise over the amount all on there own but in the end was to late. I feel for his family and friends who have lost such a lovely young man at such a young age due there negligence.

R.I.P Donny we will all miss you sleep tight. XXX
I agree, am so ashamed of the NHS for not helping Donny, as I believe that if he was given this treatment earlier he would be still here and had a good chance, but Instead his friends & family raised the funds by doing fund raising and managed to raise over the amount all on there own but in the end was to late. I feel for his family and friends who have lost such a lovely young man at such a young age due there negligence. R.I.P Donny we will all miss you sleep tight. XXX Lianne&Hayley

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