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'ZOMBIE MAN' WILL TALK TO MPs

Scunthorpe Telegraph
November 15, 2002
by Paul Savage

House of Commons platform after drug nightmare

A man who was compensated to the tune of 40,000 after being prescribed drugs which made him live in a state of 'suicidal depression', has been invited to talk at the House of Commons.

To raise awareness of his case and the drugs involved, Raymond Nimmo, of Bottesford, and his wife Diane have been invited by John Grogan, MP for Selby, to a parliamentary reception on behalf of the 'Beat the Benzos' charity at the House of Commons.

The reception is to mark the tabling of an Early Day Motion concerning Benzodiazepines, to highlight over-prescription of tranquilliser drugs including Ativan, Temazepam and Valium (Diazepam) and calling for tighter prescription guidelines for GPs, and greater support for involuntary addicts.

Mr Nimmo said: "We will get the campaign going - there are a number of issues which need to be resolved.

"They are still being prescribed willy-nilly. There needs to be a reclassification as they kill more people than class A drugs every year.

"Something serious needs to be attended to. We need action now - we need help for people who need it.

"I am fighting back. I am one man trying to help lots and lots of people."

Mr Nimmo, of Bottesford, was prescribed diazepam, commonly known as Valium, by his doctor and he took it, thinking it would make him better.

But, as previously reported, the drugs made Mr Nimmo far worse, creating a suicidal 'twilight world' which led him into a dark world of depression.

In 1984, Mr Nimmo consulted Dr Shambulinghappa at his Cottage Beck Road surgery about a dental infection.

He was prescribed an antibiotic, but suffered what he now knows was an allergic reaction which gave him severe abdominal pains. He was told the pain was caused by a muscle spasm and was prescribed tranquillisers and painkillers until 1985 when he was told to take high doses of diazepam.

But it was not until 1998 when the true extent of the problem was revealed, and Mr Nimmo underwent a three-month programme to wean him off the highly-addictive drug.

After taking legal action against his GPs, Mr Nimmo settled the case and won 40,000.

Mr Nimmo added he had around 50 signatures from MPs in support of the Early Day Motion, and hoped to raise this to 100 on Monday.

His solicitor, Caroline Moore, of Medical Solicitors, Sheffield has also been invited down to speak at the reception, where she will tell MPs about the dangers of the drug.

"Since the court case we have had an awful lot of interest from the public.

"Ray has his own support group through his website and what we are trying to achieve is highlight the public's awareness of the problem."

She added the reception would hopefully increase the awareness of the problem among MPs, so a motion could eventually be put forward in an attempt to control this class of drug.

For more information, log onto Mr Nimmo's website at: www.benzo.org.uk.

Story by Paul Savage


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