Razvan joined Watsi on November 27th, 2016. One year ago, Razvan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Razvan's most recent donation traveled 5,600 miles to support Anthonie, a 9-year-old boy from Haiti, to fund overseas prep and transportation for his life-saving heart surgery.
Razvan has funded healthcare for 54 patients in 11 countries.
Razvan has funded healthcare for 54 patients in 11 countries.
Anthonie is a student from Haiti. He lives with his aunt and uncle and their family in a small town in northern Haiti. He enjoys going to school and church. Anthonie has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. These prevent blood from flowing normally through his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. The care Anthonie needs is not available in Haiti so he needs to travel for surgery. He will fly to the Cayman Islands and on January 9th will undergo cardiac surgery. During surgery, surgeons will sew a patch over the hole to close it, and remove the muscular blockage in his heart. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is also contributing $16,000 to pay for his treatment. Anthonie's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep, travel, and follow-up care. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also pays for obtaining his passport, and for the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Anthonie's family overseas. Anthonie's aunt says, "Anthonie has been very sick for a long time, we are all praying that this is the miracle that will make him better!"
Chit Htun is a 21-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his mother and two younger sisters and a younger brother. His father is deceased and his mother is a homemaker. She takes care of the household and her children. All of his younger siblings are students, while Chit Htun and his eldest sister are doing an online general education diploma. Chit Htun has two aunts who help the family financially as they can. He also has a former teacher who is able to contribute some money consistently to the family. This normally has been enough to cover the family’s basic necessities but since the February 2021 coup, prices have increased significantly and there is not always enough money to pay for food. Sometimes the family has free meals at the local monastery. Chit Htun was born with spina bifida as well as hydrocephalus at the Maternal and Child Hospital in Myawaddy in Burma and when he was just over a month old, he had a stent inserted in his brain to control hydrocephalus. He has multiple conditions arising from the spina bifida, including bilateral atrophy to his lower legs with club feet, a neurogenic bladder requiring a suprapubic catheter, a neurogenic bowel requiring a colostomy, along with scoliosis. Despite the number of surgeries he has undergone, and the pain he endures, he is a pleasant and engaging young man, thoughtful and independent. In Oct 2021, Chit Htun fell down from some stairs at his home. Though there was no loss of consciousness at the time, he hit his head with the fall. Since that time, he has been experiencing headaches and dizziness with occasional loss of consciousness. His mother brought him to the hospital in Yangon and a scan showed that the original shunt was in place. A second shunt was inserted, and it appeared to help with the loss of consciousness, but headaches and dizziness continued to be a problem. After the second shunt was cleared of partial blockage, Chit Htun still continued to have headaches and dizziness and then in October, he had a seizure, accompanied by nausea and vomiting. His family cannot afford to go for further investigation and treatment so that they came to Mae Tao Clinic across the border in Mae Sot, Thailand. Doctors want Chit Htun to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Chit Htun's CT scan and care, scheduled for November 28th. Chit Htun said, “My condition is interrupting my education and my future. When I always have to stop my studies for treatment, it makes it difficult to continue.”
Soktha is a 32-year-old man from Cambodia. He is married with two children. His son is seven years old and in first grade, while his daughter is one year old and stays home with his wife. Soktha sells bread at the local market. At home in his free time, he likes to play football, read books, and play with his children. For the past three years, Soktha has been experiencing pain and swelling in his left jaw. He visited a local hospital and underwent biopsies, which showed that he has a benign tumor and chronic inflammation in the tissue around his jaw. As a result of this condition, Soktha experiences pain, cannot open his mouth, and has difficulty eating and drinking. When Soktha learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled for three hours seeking treatment. On December 5th, doctors will perform a mandibulectomy and fibula free-flap reconstruction. After recovery, Soktha hopes to be pain-free and able to open his mouth again. CSC is requesting $991 to fund this procedure, which covers the cost of surgery, hospitalization, and medications. Soktha's family was able to gather $100 to contribute to his care. Soktha said: "I hope I can eat and drink again and get comfortable, so I can feel good again to support my family."
Kheoun is a loving grandfather. He is 62 years old and farms rice and vegetables in Kandal province. He lives with his wife who manages the farm with him. Together, they have one son, four daughters, and 15 grandchildren. At home, he likes to watch the news on TV and listen to monks pray on the radio. Five years ago, Kheoun developed a pterygium in his right eye, causing him itchiness, tearing, and blurry vision. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. Kheoun needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $225. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for September 13th. Kheoun says, "I hope after surgery I can see better to plant rice and vegetables. I want to be able to work outside to support my family."
Samuel is a 21-year-old talkative young man. He is the second born in a family of five children. His father passed away when he was four years old, so his mother had to raise him and his siblings by herself. She does jobs on tea farms to provide for the family. When Samuel was two years old, his abdomen started to swell, which was very painful for him. His mother took him to the hospital and he was given some medication and sent back home. The medication did not work as expected. He was then taken to a different hospital for examination. He was given more medication and after some time he seemed to be better. The stomachache did not go away completely, however. Samuel and his mother shared that over the years, he has had stomachaches and gotten used to taking pain medication. In 2017 when Samuel was in high school, the pain worsened and his abdomen started to swell again. He had to leave school as a result. His mother took him to a hospital in Meru where he was admitted for three months. While in the hospital, scans and a biopsy were done to determine what the problem was. He was given a colostomy, where the end of the colon is brought through an opening in the abdominal wall, in order to pass stool. This surgery is often performed to bypass bowel malformations, but colostomies are usually temporary and may call for closure. In Samuel's case, his colostomy requires closure in order to restore bowel function and prevent future complications. At that time, his doctors did not manage to treat him and referred him to BethanyKids Hospital in 2018. On arrival, he was examined and admitted, as he was not in good condition. After more scans and tests, he was ultimately diagnosed with Hirschsprung’s disease. Since then, Samuel has undergone several surgeries with the aim of trying to better his condition. The first surgery failed, but the second was successful. He is now scheduled to undergo his last surgery to close the colostomy so that he can pass stool on his own again and live a more active life. Earlier in his treatment, Samuel's parents had enrolled in the national health insurance program (NHIF), which helped them pay for most of his hospital bills. BethanyKids also chipped in on occasion to help with some of the bills. Unfortunately, for his last surgery, NHIF has rejected the request since he is beyond the age to be covered by his mother’s insurance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping him to undergo treatment and needs $1,084 to cover the cost of a colostomy closure for Samuel. The surgery is scheduled to take place on November 11th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Samuel’s Mother says, “For years now, I have been very worried about my son, but God has seen us through.”
Lynemandy is a 28 year old woman from Haiti, who is studying for a business degree at a local university. She lives with her parents in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Lynemandy has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation, which is a result of a bout of rheumatic fever that she suffered as a child. One of the four valves in her heart was severely damaged as a result of this illness, and in 2018, Lynemandy underwent surgery to repair the damaged valve. The valve functioned well for four years, but now it needs to be replaced so she can live healthy in the future. The care she needs is unfortunately not available within Haiti, so Lynemandy will need to travel to undergo cardiac surgery in the United States on November 17th. Her surgery, during which a new valve will be implanted, is being funded by Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital. Now Lynemandy and her family need to raise $1,500 to cover the costs of pre and post operative treatment, and for the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Lynemandy when she travels to the United States. Lynemandy said: "I am very grateful to everyone who is working so hard to keep me alive and healthy."
Hassan is a hardworking 37-year-old from Kenya who works as a casual laborer. He lives in a single-room rental house that costs about $10 per month. On July 25th, Hassan was working as a night guard when he was attacked by unknown people. During the attack, his left leg was hit with a sharp object. He was eventually taken to a nearby health facility for emergency treatment, where he received stitches and was discharged with pain medication. However, his condition did not improve, and he was still unable to walk. Community health workers in the area took Hassan to a nearby hospital, where an X-ray revealed a transverse patella fracture with some displacement. A doctor at our medical partner's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital, recommends that he undergo fracture repair surgery. Hassan shares that income from casual labor jobs in Kenya is inconsistent and is not enough to pay for the proposed procedure. He also does not have medical insurance and would need to pay for the surgery in cash. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 26th, Hassan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $979 to fund this procedure. Hassan says, “I am struggling to walk as a result of the fracture. I am unable to get any manual work to earn a living because I cannot use my legs. Surviving without a job is an issue. I need this surgery to be able to work.”
Erlinda is a hardworking 54-year-old woman from the Philippines. She earns money to support her family by washing and ironing clothes. In 2019, Erlinda began to experience troubling symptoms, including difficulty breathing and swallowing. Eventually, she noticed a growing mass on her neck. Because of this, she decided to seek medical treatment, but the doctor notified her that due to the progression of her mass, medication would not be enough to treat her condition. Erlinda was diagnosed with Thyroid Carcinoma, a type of cancer that begins in the thyroid gland. It occurs when healthy cells in the thyroid change and grow out of control, forming a tumor. She now needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Erlinda receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on July 16th at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $890, and she needs help raising money for this life-changing care. Erlinda tearfully shared, "Where else would I find money to pay for my surgery? We can't afford it. I'm really thankful that Watsi, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, and Our Lady of Peace Hospital are going to help me."
Janet is a hardworking mother of two from the Philippines. To support their family, she works as a merchandiser, and her partner works as an on-call construction worker. Janet has been diagnosed with breast cancer. In 2013, she discovered a mass on her right breast and underwent surgery to remove it, but the mass unfortunately reoccurred in 2015. However, this time there was a mass on each of her breasts. When she was finally able to seek medical care, an ultrasound showed that the masses have grown in size and need to be surgically removed. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been suggested to rid her body of breast cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Janet receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a mastectomy on August 13th at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of her treatment is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising $983 to cover the remaining amount. After treatment, Janet will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Janet shared, "This free surgery is a big help for me. We don't have to worry about my medical expenses anymore. Thank you so much Watsi and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for your help!"
James is a beautiful newborn baby from Tanzania. He is the youngest in a family of three children. To support their family, his father practices small-scale farming, and his mother is a homemaker. His parents share that their income is only enough to meet their day-to-day needs. James has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape, meaning both of James's legs are twisted downward and inward. Without treatment, he will grow up and have difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, James's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund James's clubfoot repair. This procedure will allow him to grow in good health and walk with ease when he grows up. James's mother says, "It has been rough for the past two weeks, moving with my baby from one health centre to another without any success. I am glad that he will get the treatment required."
Chrismarlie is a 13-year-old student from Haiti. She lives with her parents and three siblings in a city on the northern coast of Haiti. Her father is a school administrator, and her mother is a homemaker. Chrismarlie shared that she enjoys going to school and listening to music with her friends. Chrismarlie has a cardiac condition called pulmonic stenosis, which means one of her heart valves is too tight, making it difficult for blood to pass through and leading to heart failure. The surgery that she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately, Chrismarlie will be able to fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On July 29th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which the surgeons will widen the heart valve so that blood can flow through it more easily. Chrismarlie's family is raising funds to cover the costs of her surgery prep, as our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), is contributing funds to help cover the cost of surgery. The $1,500 will support her surgery prep, which includes all labs, medication, check-ups and follow-up appointments, and the passports needed for HCA's social workers to accompany Chrismarlie and her family overseas. Chrismarlie said, "I would like to say thank you to everyone who is helping to fix my heart problem!"
Htun is a four year old boy living with 12 other children and a pastor and his wife who are helping to raise them in Tak Province, Thailand. Htun enjoys riding bicycles, watching cartoons, and playing with action figures. Towards the beginning of April, Htun began experiencing discomfort while walking and when he was sitting down. According to his guardian, whenever Htun begins to feel pain, he will point to where the pain is coming from and cry. Htun has been diagnosed with an inguinal hernia, which will need to be treated with surgery. Fortunately, he was brought to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, and he is now scheduled for hernia repair surgery on May 31st, at Mae Sot General Hospital. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Htun's hernia repair surgery, after which Htun will be able to live a full and healthy life ahead. "I want to support him as if he were my own child, and I want him to feel like we are his family," shared the pastor.