Maya joined Watsi on July 16th, 2015. Four years ago, Maya became the 1936th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 4,557 more people have become monthly donors! Maya's most recent donation supported Khin, a university student from Burma, to fund cardiac surgery.
Maya has funded healthcare for 59 patients in 12 countries.
Htay is a 26-year-old-Araknese woman who lives with her younger sister in Yangon, Burma. Htay is in her final year of university. Her sister works as a seamstress in a shop and earns 200,000 kyat (approx.200 USD) per month. Their parents and their eldest sister are rice farmers in Rakhine State. Every year, they sell half of their harvest to earn an income. Htay's sister in Yangon sends their parents money occasionally, while their parents support Htay's medical expenses. The income that Htay's sister earns is enough to cover their daily expenses and pay for basic health care. In 2018, Htay started to feel very tired and could not sleep well at night. She also experienced chest pains if she walked anywhere far. She took traditional medicine which helped her feel and sleep better. However, she continued to feel tired and experience pain. One day in 2019, a neighbor who has a heart condition, told her that she could have a heart disease like her; the neighbor had also experienced the same symptoms as Htay. The neighbor advised her to seek treatment at Pinlon Hospital in Yangon, where the neighbor had undergone heart surgery. Htay decided to follow the neighbor's recommendation and also moved in with her sister in Yangon for extra support. In December 2019, Htay went to Pinlon Hospital to see a cardiologist. After receiving an echocardiogram (echo), the doctor told her that two valves in her heart no longer work and that she would need to receive surgery to replace those valves. The doctor also told her that because her condition is not severe, she did not need surgery yet. She received six month's worth of medication and a follow-up appointment for June 17th, 2020. When Htay came back for her appointment, she received another echo and an x-ray. After checking her results, the doctor told her that her condition had progressed and she now needed surgery, which would cost 15,000,000 kyat (approx.15,000 USD). When they learned about the price of the procedure, Htay and her sister lost hope of ever getting Htay treatment; they could not afford to pay such a large sum of money. When Htay told a nurse at the hospital called Sandar Ko about their financial situation, the nurse told her about an abbot who might be able to help her. The abbot heads Kyaung Gyi Parahita Monastery and is a partner of Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Htay called the abbot and asked for help accessing surgery. The abbot then referred Htay to Watsi's Medical Partner BCMF for assistance receiving treatment at Pinlon Hospital. Currently, Htay feels tired and suffers from chest pains when she walks a lot. She cannot sleep very well at night and she feels short of breath at least twice a week. To try and cope with her symptoms mentally, she prays or recites Dhamma. She also tries to help her sister with household chore such as cooking and sweeping. She hopes that she will be able to continue her studies after surgery and she would like to work for the government as a civil servant once she graduates. Htay shared, “When I graduate, I will work and support my parents because they are getting old and they will not be able to work on the farm in the future.”
Samet is a 41-year-old taxi driver from Cambodia. He has two daughters and a son. After work, he likes to go to the gym to workout and help his kids study their lessons. Ten years ago, Samet had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in his left ear to perforate. For this reason, Samet experiences tinnitus, ear discharge, and hearing loss. He cannot hear or communicate easily with others, making his work as a taxi driver difficult. Samet traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his left ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $464 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Samet said, "I hope that my hearing will improve and I will no longer have an ear infection."
Char is a 28-year-old man who lives with his grandmother, wife, and daughter in a town in Tak Province, Thailand. Char moved to Thailand with this grandparents when he was eight years old, after his mother passed away. Char’s grandfather passed away eight years ago and now his grandmother is retired. Char used to sell fruits in the market but stopped working last year because of his condition. Char’s wife works as domestic worker and earns 4,500 baht (approx. $150) per month. His daughter is a student. Their monthly income is just enough to cover their daily expenses but they cannot save money or pay for basic health care. In April of 2019 Char was driving his motorcycle to work when suddenly a car driving on the wrong side of the road hit his motorcycle head on. He was flung from his motorcycle and knocked unconscious. The crowed who witnessed his accident called an ambulance, that brought him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH). Soon after Char was brought to MSH, he received surgery to insert a metal rod into his right lower leg, as the doctor found that both his bones in that leg were fractured. During his follow-up appointment, he received an x-ray and was told that he would need to receive a bone graft. However, since Char has been unable to work since his accident, he had used up his savings to pay for his initial treatment and hospitalization. Unable to afford the surgery, Char refused treatment and returned home. Unfortunately, he recently fell through the wooden stairs in his home, causing the rod in his leg to bend. His doctors have shared that he needs surgery to replace the rod in his leg. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), can help. The surgery costs $1,500 and now, they are asking for your help to fund this life-changing surgery. Char shared, "I feel too uncomfortable to sleep [at night] and sometimes, I cry because of the pain. I want to get better soon so that I can help my family [financially].”
Thi is a 31-year-old woman who lives with her husband, father-in-law, nephew and daughter in Shwepythar Town in the Yangon Division of Burma. Thi is a homemaker while her husband is an electrician. Thi’s nephew and her daughter are students. In mid-February 2019, Thi developed a fever, a cough, and difficulty breathing. She went to the nearest clinic where she received an injection and oral medication to treat her fever and cough. When she took the medication she felt better, but the next day, she had difficulty breathing, felt tired, had a sharp pain in her chest, and a rapid heartbeat. She then went to a hospital in Yangon, where she received another injection, oral medication, and an x-ray. After the doctor diagnosed her with asthma, she also received a nebulizer for her asthma. Once the doctor checking her had the x-ray results, the doctor told her that her heart is enlarged and referred her to another hospital for further investigation. There she received an echocardiogram (echo) and another x-ray. After her results came in, the doctor told her that her heart valves are not working well and that she might have to replace two of the valves in her heart. She was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis, mitral valve regurgitation, aortic valve stenosis, and aortic valve regurgitation. The doctor also told her that the surgery would cost 2.5 million kyat (approx. 2,500 USD). Thi could not afford to pay such a large amount and when she told the doctor this, the doctor provided her with oral medication every month. She did not feel better after she took the medication. Last month, Thi’s husband was setting up the electricity in his friend’s house when he met a cardiologist. The doctor had come to look after his friend’s sister, who has a heart condition. Thi’s husband had told his friend about Thi’s heart condition and his friend introduced him to the cardiologist. After he told the doctor about Thi’s condition, the doctor told him to bring her in to his office with her medical records. After they came into his office and doctor reviewed her medical records, he referred her to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Pinlon Hospital to finally receive the treatment she needs. Currently, Thi feels tired, has difficulty breathing and cannot walk long distances. Aside from her symptoms, she is very stressed and upset about her financial situation. In her free time, Thi likes to do housework and bring her daughter to and from school. In the future, when she is fully recovered, she would like to work as a seamstress and save money for her family. Thi said, “I think too much about my condition and worry about the treatment’s cost. So, I cannot sleep at night and I have a small appetite.” Thi’s husband said, “I have to accompany her whenever my wife visits the hospital. My daughter and I have had to stop working and attending school whenever she is sick. I feel bad for my wife because she cries every night since she found out that she needs to receive surgery.” Thi added, “I am very afraid to die and to lose my family as my daughter is still young.”
Charles is 65-year-old farmer from Kapsaret Village in rural Kenya. He is a widower with ten children, all adults with their own rural families. Charles was brought to our hospital by his brother. He had sustained motorbike accident in early March when going home and fracture his right elbow. He was taken to hospital and given pain medications. The brother decided to bring him here for better treatment. An x-ray showed he had a closed fracture on the right elbow. If not operated Charles will continue to experience pain and the fracture may complicate further leading to malunion. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On May 5th, Charles will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The procedure will help him to regain normal function of his arm. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure. “My family is not able to meet this cost and so I kindly request for support, so that my hand can be well and I can continue with my farming to sustain myself and support my children,” shared Charles.
Jane is a farmer from Kenya who was well until Friday night, February 28th, when she fell on a hard ground while carrying a bunch of firewood. She visited a nearby health centre but was referred to our facility for specialized treatment secondary to severe pain and inability to stretch her hand. Upon review, x-ray imaging indicated a radial head fracture and a radial head excision with Open Reduction Internal Fixation (ORIF) recommended by doctors. The surgery will allow her to stretch/flex her hand and continue with her normal life duties. Jane is a peasant farmer in the upcountry, planting millet and sorghum on her farm located along the valley. The mother of 8 and a grandmother to several children, she has always worked hard to meet her children's needs. Despite her hard work, Jane faces a lot of social challenges at home. Since her husband was murdered four years ago by unknown persons, Jane developed depression that led to partial psychosis. Due to this condition, Jane is unable to attend to her home duties like before. She no longer does farming like she used to do, now she is left in the hands of her daughter who takes care of her needs. Jane's family is able to raise $98 only. She is requesting the rest of the funds to undergo ORIF. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 6th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure. The surgery will reduce further complications and allow Jane be able to utilize her hand with ease. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $771 to fund this procedure. “I hope that I will get well soon. I am missing my home,” says Jane with sweet laughter.
Sandar is is a 48-year-old pastor from Burma. She lives with her husband, daughter, and seven children who she is sheltering. In her free time, Sandar likes to prepare for her sermons, read the Bible, and pray for others in need. Since 2017, Sandar has been experiencing high blood pressure and heavy abnormal vaginal bleeding. She has been diagnosed with pelvic mass and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Sandar's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Sandar is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on February 24th. 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 abnormal bleeding or discomfort. "I worry about the children I shelter," said Sandar. "Currently, I have to buy a lot of sanitary pads and my daughter borrowed 500,000 kyat (approx. 500 USD) from her boss to support me, which she will pay back in installments.”
Ko Myo Zaw is a 41-year-old man who lives with his wife in Burma. He and his wife used to work as a seamster and sew children’s clothing. However, Ko Myo stopped working more than a year ago because of his poor health and he now relies on his wife’s income. On the 18th of June 2018, Ko Myo developed pain in his left waist after sitting for a long time. He then had to stand up every two hours to reduce the pain. This continued for a few more months, until he was no longer able to work. A year after he first experienced these symptoms, he went to Myawaddy Hospital to see a doctor. He received an x-ray and ultrasound which revealed he has a kidney stone in his left kidney. The doctor gave him medication to breakup the stone and Ko Myo took the medication for one year. The medication reduced the pain during the first month, but returned a month after that. By the 29th of May 2019, he could no longer take the pain and went to see the doctor at Myawaddy Hospital. The doctor then gave him stronger medications to reduce the pain and break up the stone. At the suggestion of a neighbor, he decided to seek treatment at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) across the border in Thailand, which he was told provides charitable health care. On 5th of October 2019, he arrived at MTC. The next day, he was brought to the local hospital where he received an ultrasound and an appointment to undergo laser treatment to breakup the kidney stone. He took out a loan to pay for the first round of treatment on November 24th, 2019. When he returned to the clinic in January to undergo a follow-up ultrasound, he was told they also found stones in his right kidney. Unable to pay for further treatment, Ko Myo was referred to Watsi Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance in accessing further treatment. Ko Myo's next appointment to undergo a second round of laser treatment will be on Jaunary 28th. He will complete treatment for the kidney stone in his left kidney, before he receives treatment for the stones in his other kidney. Currently, Ko Myo still has pain in his waist. Sometimes he feels tired and the area around his left waist feels hot. "Once I recover I would like to go back to work and pay back my loan," said Ko Myo.
Khin is 38-year-old woman in Thailand. Originally from Mon State, Burma, Khin went to one of the refugee camps in Thailand to visit her cousins and search for job opportunities four years ago. However, Khin met her husband there and ended up moving in with her parents-in-law, four brothers-in-law and a nephew in the camp. Since 2016, Khin has been experiencing abnormal bleeding, pain in her back and suprapubic area which increases whenever she walks long distances. She has been diagnosed with uterine myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Khin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Khin is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain or discomfort and will be able to return to work full-time.
U Min is a 49-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife, son, and daughter. He and his son work as day laborers. His wife stays home to look after household chores, while his daughter studies in grade school. About a month ago, U Min's right heel was injured while he was getting off from the tractor he was driving at work. It was very painful that he went to a clinic in his village to receive treatment. However, his condition did not improved with the treatment, and the wound worsened day by day. He was then advised by the health workers at his village to go to Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH) for further treatment. At MCLH, the doctor did detail assessment of U Min's condition and said that because of his injury, the blood supply to his heel was insufficient. His wound by then has turned into black color, as the tissues around his heel were damaged and have died, and it causes him severe pain, especially at night. Since the doctor could no longer help to make his ulcer healed by treatments, the only option is to do a below knee amputation. U Min said, "It's so painful that I can't bear it anymore. I just want to receive surgery as soon as possible."
Jackson is a young student from Tanzania. He is the firstborn child in a family of five children. His father says he is a hard-working working boy at home and school. Jackson helps look after his siblings when his parents are not around and he also goes out with his father’s cattle to seek green pasture during the weekends when he is not at school. His parents are small scale farmers and livestock keepers with a limited income. For the past week, Jackson has had an inguinal hernia. This hernia causes him pain and if not treated may result in intestinal tissue damage Fortunately, on October 16th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $539 to fund Jackson's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Jackson says, “The swelling is causing me so much pain at night and walking has been difficult. I look forward to feeling better.”
Srey Nich is a 24-year-old university student from Cambodia. She likes to listen to music, read books, and hopes to become an electrician after completing her studies. When she was ten years old, Srey Nich had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her right ear to perforate. For this reason, Srey Nich experiences hearing loss, discharge, tinnitus, and itchiness. She finds it difficult to participate in her normal activities and lacks focus at school. Srey Nich traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On August 1, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $423 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. She says, "I hope that after my operation, I will be able to hear again and the ear infection will stop."