Patricia's Story

Patricia joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Ten years ago, Patricia joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Patricia's most recent donation traveled 9,000 miles to support Frazer, a four-year-old boy from Malawi, for hernia repair surgery.


Patricia has funded healthcare for 28 patients in 11 countries.

Patients funded by Patricia

Mercy is a six-month-old girl from Kenya. She was brought to our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), by her parents and her uncle. Mercy lives in a two room house with six other siblings where her mother watches over the family at home and nearby, her father works in a tea factory. When Mercy was born, she developed a sac-like protrusion on the lower backbone. This open defect on her spine, a condition called spina bifida, has already been hindering her normal development for the last few months. The congenital deformity is often a consequence of fetal hydrocephalus where cerebrospinal fluid adds pressure to the spinal cord. “Mercy came to the hospital with a leaking mass, so surgery must be done [promptly] to avoid severe infection and other complications,” explains AMHF. If her condition goes untreated, tethered cord syndrome is likely to develop, resulting in a permanently hunched back or a spine bent sideways. Mercy requires $805 for a spina bifida closure surgery, in which a surgeon will correct, reconstruct, and close the deformity. Long term monitoring and braces are part of the treatment process to observe her walking ability and gauge surgery success. AMHF believes the surgery will eliminate infections, prevent more nerve damage in the future, and decrease her chances of developing tethered cord syndrome. Mercy's father says, "I hope Mercy will get treatment and this condition will be past us. Please help us make her treatment possible."

Fully funded

“Ana is a curious little girl and the youngest of four children,” our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq (WK) tells us. “Ana likes to play with plastic bags and pretend they are balloons while her mom weaves blouses to sell.” One-year-old Ana and her family live in Guatemala. “Ana has had pneumonia two times since she was born, and is extremely under weight and height for her age,” reports WK. “Since her first bout of pneumonia, her appetite has declined and her mother reports she is losing weight.” Ana is suffering from the effects of malnutrition. Ana’s mother is the sole breadwinner in the family, supporting four children on her own. “She struggles to buy sufficient food for the family, and Ana’s sickness is a constant topic of concern and a financial burden that hurts the whole family,” WK shares with us. If her malnutrition goes unchecked, Ana will continue to get ill. Her immune system will weaken further; she will have low energy, and will be at risk for chronic illness and infection. This will impair her growth and development, and she will start to lag behind other children her age physically and mentally. With $535 in Watsi funding, Ana will receive malnutrition treatment. Doctors will provide Ana with medicine to treat her illnesses and improve her health, and macronutrient supplements to up her caloric intake. This intervention will increase her energy, strengthen her immune system, and help her recoup the weight she has lost. To ensure that Ana’s health is maintained long-term, Ana’s mother will receive intensive nutritional education. A nutritional specialist will teach her how to make healthy food choices that are cost-effective for the family. This will increase her confidence in her ability to maintain her children’s health with the resources the family has. With this intervention, Ana will be able to reach her developmental potential. Her mother will get to watch her achieve all the proper developmental milestones and hopefully one day attend school and get an education. “I am so thankful for your visit,” Ana’s mother tells WK. “This will be a great help to my family and me.”

Fully funded