Mackinnon joined Watsi on December 21st, 2019. 9 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Mackinnon's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Hnin, a mother of two from Burma, to fund a total abdominal hysterectomy.
Mackinnon has funded healthcare for 20 patients in 6 countries.
Hnin is a mother of two from Burma. She lives with her husband and two sons, and she is always busy with housework. Since a few months after surgery to remove the cyst in her uterus in 2017, Hnin has been experiencing lower abdominal pain and abnormal bleeding. She has been diagnosed with Myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Hnin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Hnin is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy and our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain or bleeding. Moreover, the surgery will stop the mass from reappearing later. Hnin said, “I want to continue to work purchasing clothes and other goods from Mae Sot and selling them in Yangon to earn an income for my family. Because of my condition, I am not able to work for two years now.”
Moe is a 31-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and four-year-old son in Mae La Refugee Camp (MLRC) in Tha Song Yang District of Tak Province. She has lived there for 20 years after her parents moved from Bilin Township, Bago Division in Burma because of the civil war. Moe is a homemaker who does all the household chores while her husband is a farmer who works on rented land outside of the camp, where he plants corn and beans. To make some extra income, Moe also sells snacks from home. Their combined income is enough to cover basic family expenses. As for healthcare, they receive free basic care in the camp provided by International Rescue Committee (IRC). A few months ago, Moe started to feel a mass in her lower abdomen while she was lying down after eating dinner. She thought it was strange and told her neighbor about it the next day. Her neighbor told her that this was normal for someone gaining weight, which she suggested Moe was. Upon hearing this, she did not seek treatment, agreeing with her neighbor’s conclusion. However, she soon felt that the mass was increasing in size, which did not seem normal. On February 13th, 2020, she decided it was time to go to the clinic in the camp for further investigation. The medic at the camp examined to her and told her that she likely had a cyst in her lower abdomen, but they could not diagnose her further. The medic informed the doctor at the camp and the doctor discussed the situation with IRC staff, who then referred Moe to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. She was referred to MSH on February 17th for an ultrasound. Upon going to MSH, doctors performed an ultrasound and told her that she has a mass in her uterus. Since the mass was already large, however, the ultrasound did not show a clear result whether the mass was outside or inside her uterus. For this reason, the doctor recommended a computed tomography (CT) scan on February 25th. Moe returned home and came back to MSH for the CT scan according to the appointment date. On the day of the scan, she also received a blood test and urine test before being informed that she would have to come back on February 27th to get the results. When she returned, the doctor explained to her that there is a large tumor in her right ovary and that she needs surgery to remove it, followed by a tissue biopsy to confirm whether the growth is cancerous. Currently, Moe has a burning pain in her lower right abdomen. Sometimes the pain gets worse, which makes it difficult for her sleep or eat well. For this reason, she said that she lost her appetite and weight. When she eats, she feels discomfort as her stomach becomes tight and full, even she eats very little. She feels like the mass is gradually getting bigger and she feels more comfortable lying down instead of sitting or walking. Moe sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on March 24th and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Moe said, “Both my husband and I became worried when we heard that there was mass in my uterus. We worry that my whole uterus might need to be removed and we will no longer be able to have more children. Now, the doctor told me that only the tumor will be removed and that I most likely will be able to have children in the future. Me and my husband want to have one or two more children, so we were very happy when we heard that my uterus would not to be removed.”
Sarah is a student from Kenya who lives at a girls’ rescue center together with her two sisters. They escaped from forced circumcision that their parents were pushing for and the rescue center secured their child custody rights. However, the center does not have health insurance for the children living there. In 2018, Sarah suffered a snake bite but it was never treated. She healed with contractures on her left wrist and elbow, which has strained her ability to utilize her left hand. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Sarah receive treatment. On June 19th, surgeons at their care center will perform a contracture release surgery. With successful surgery, she will be able to use her hand with a lot of ease. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,176 procedure. Sarah’s guardian says, “Sarah is limited in her left-hand functions. Please assist her.”
Rena is a five-month-old baby girl from Kenya who has an inguinal hernia. From her parent’s description, the hernia seems to be quite painful for her and she has been crying a lot since Friday, March 27th. Rena was taken to their local hospital and diagnosed with a hernia. Her family was then referred to Watsi Medical Partner's Care Center Bethany Kids Hospital where hernia repair surgery was recommended by the medical team. Without the appropriate treatment, Rena will be at risk of complications such as strangulation. Rena’s parents are peasant farmers from central Kenya living on their ancestral land. They rely on seasonal farming with limited income. Rena has an elder sibling who is five years old. The family is not able to raise the funds required for her surgery. They would require several weeks of saving which might be too late for the young child. They appeal for financial assistance. Fortunately, on March 31st, Rena will undergo repair surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Rena's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Rena’s mother says, “We came here hopeful that Rena will be treated. Thank you for your willingness to support our child.”
Esther is a 32-year-old mother of two from central Kenya. She recently separated with her husband, who left with all the belongings they had bought together for the family. Despite coming around from time to time, he does not support the family. Esther shared that she borrowed a TV set for her children since the one they had was carried away. For the last five years, Esther has been having abdominal pains; sometimes severe. She has been to many hospitals, taken many drugs but the problem persisted. Esther’s condition is becoming worse by the fact that she is currently not able to work due to a fall she had in 2017, where she hurt her back but feels better now. A friend advised her to try visiting Nazareth hospital. Our doctor ordered an ultrasound that showed multiple gallstones. He advised a cholecystectomy but Esther is not in a position to pay for this treatment. Before, she used to run a small shop but now does not work and depends on her sisters and brother for her family's basic needs. If not treated Esther may have complications such as blocked bile duct, pancreatic duct or even gall bladder cancer. “I request for help to undergo this treatment and God will bless you. I am confident I will be well and can’t wait to see myself back to my normal life and taking care of my children,” said Esther.
Tem is a 73-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has one son, two daughters, and seven grandchildren. She enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio. One year ago, Tem developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her irritation, pain, and vision loss. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Tem learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On April 27th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $229 procedure. "I hope that I will be able to go out on my own again and help to take care of my grandchildren," Tem said.
Aung is a 15-year-old novice monk from Burma. He stays in the monastery in his village of Hpa-An. His parents own a piece of land where his father and oldest brother grow vegetables and fruits to sell. His family also grows vegetables for their own consumption. Two months ago, Aung developed headaches, and his head increased in size, especially the right side of his head. At that time, his father bought medication from the pharmacy to reduce his headaches. He took it for two days but did not feel better. Later on, his father took him to Hpa-An Hospital where he received a blood test and an x-ray. The doctor told his father to take him to Yangon but his father instead brought him to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Mae Sot, Thailand. On February 25th, Aung arrived at MTC and he was referred to Watsi Medical Partner's Mae Sot Hospital the next day. At MSH, the doctor has recommended a CT scan and also told Aung's father that Aung needs to replace the shunt he received in his head in 2016 that has helped treat his hydrocephalus condition; unfortunately, the shunt is now blocked. The family is hopeful that Watsi supporters may be able to support a shunt procedure as well. Currently, Aung suffers from headaches and the area where he had the shunt inserted into his head is slowly increasing in size. The area of his head that has increased in size is sensitive and he is not able to sleep on his right side. Doctors want Aung 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 further diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Aung's CT scan and care, scheduled for February 27th. Aung said, "When I lie down and sleep, I can sleep only on one side because the growth hurts if I lay on it." He is hoping to feel better with treatment.
Hoeun is a 77-year-old fish seller from Cambodia. She has five children, ten grandchildren, and enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio. Six months ago, Hoeun developed a cataract in each eye, causing her blurry vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Hoeun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On January 15th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $425 procedure. "I hope that I will be able to see better and can go outside and recognize things again," she said.
Ai is a 58-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He has two daughters, one son, five grandchildren, and enjoys watching television in his free time. Five years ago, Ai developed a pterygium in both eyes, causing him tearing, irritation, redness, 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. When Ai learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for four and a half hours seeking treatment. Ai 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 $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for January 13th. He said, "I hope that I will be able to see clearly and I can go back to planting rice and helping around the house."
Joseph is a young boy from Kenya. Joseph’s parents are subsistence farmers without an external source of income. Joseph is an only child and his family lives together in a small village in Central Kenya. Joseph has an inguinal hernia. If not treated, the hernia may result in intestinal tissue damage and even death. Fortunately, on February 18th, he will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Joseph's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I wish I could have come here earlier,” says Joseph’s mother as he has been having symptoms for more than two years.
Janet is a baby from Tanzania. She is the third born child in a family of three children. She is a cheerful and curious little girl. Janet's parents own a small shop which sells small home stuffs. Janet was diagnosed with genu valgus. Her legs bow inwards so that her knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, she can not walk without rubbing her knees together and this is causing her pain and discomfort. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Janet. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 28th. Treatment will hopefully restore Janet's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Janet's mother says, "I see that my daughter has a problem with her legs, I do not understand much about her condition but it worries me that she may grow up and become disabled if I do not do anything. Please help my daughter."
Margaret is a trained tailor from Kenya. She is a shy single 30-year-old from Gakoe Kiambu. Margaret completed her tailoring course recently and is yet to get into employment. She lives with her mother who is a peasant farmer. For about 10 years Margaret has struggled with headache, palpitations, sometimes sweating and later swelling of the neck. These problems have made it difficult for Margaret to socialize with family and friends. She had been visiting different health centres with no change until she came to Nazareth and a diagnosis of multinodular goitre was made through ultrasound. She has been under hormones control and now is ready for a thyroidectomy. Due to her low socioeconomic status, the family is not in a position to meet the cost and requests support. If not treated Margaret will continue experiencing social misfit and the thyroid gland will continue to grow. She is also likely to suffer from complications like thyrotoxicosis. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Margaret receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on January 23rd at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $625, and she and her family need help raising money. “I have stayed for many years with this problem yet I have no means for treatment. I plead for help so that I can be well again to live my normal life,” said Margaret.