Allow me to throw a few words in the direction of politicians in the Yukon: Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) isn’t going away. In fact, as time goes on medical advancements are going to mean more diagnoses, meaning CKD is only going to take a bigger and bigger bite out of your population, as it is everywhere else. . . . In the medical community, it is generally accepted that one in 10 Canadians is living with kidney disease or is at risk, and most of those people are unaware of their situation. . . . I would suggest that Yukon isn’t a statistical anomaly, so I also would suggest that the fact there isn’t a community dialysis unit in your area of our country is something of an embarrassing tragedy. . . .
If you are a regular here, you will be aware that Terry Coventry, 74, died in Whitehorse General Hospital on Jan. 3. He had kidney disease and was doing hemodialysis in Vancouver until, plagued by loneliness, he chose to return home even though he knew he was facing certain death.
He invited media to visit with him in hospital in Whitehorse on Dec. 10, telling them: “I’m not afraid (of dying). I’m just kind of pissed off that there’s nothing they can do for me . . . I sure hope it’ll help the next person, you know? For whatever reason, we should have a dialysis here at the hospital. We don’t.”
Jackie Hong of Yukon News has reported that Coventry’s sister, Kelly, is picking up the torch that her brother had been carrying.
“Terry has gone peacefully and the way that he wanted to, and that gives me a great deal of joy,” Kelly told Hong earlier this week. “It also gives me a great deal of joy knowing we were able to kind of tick all of the boxes that he wanted to get accomplished before his passing, and the only thing left is getting a hemodialysis machine here in the Yukon. . . .
“The success is going to have a hemodialysis machine here in the Yukon so that people don’t have to experience what he experienced and when that happens, and I say when, not if . . . then Terry’s last wish will be completed.
“Hopefully things will move quickly once everything is settled and I can sort of get the push on again.”
Here’s hoping that there are politicians in the north country who are paying attention and prepared to make a difference.
Hong’s complete story is right here.
Zach Tremblay and his mother, Jana, finally got to Vancouver on Monday. You will recall that they are from Robson, B.C., and that Zach, 16, is in need of a kidney transplant. Late last week, he began having some issues and the decision was made to get him to
Vancouver so his medical team could take a look.
Just to complete the story that began then. . . .
Unable to fly out of Trail, B.C., due to inclement weather in various locations, Zach and Jana ended up making the trip to Kelowna via ground ambulance. Jana posted late Sunday night/early Monday morning:
“Kelowna — safe and sound — BUT, and that’s a mighty big butt, there’s nothing nice to be said about travelling facing backwards and not being able to see where we were going. 🤢
“Settled in for the night , and onward to Van tomorrow
“We truly love you all.”
On Monday morning, she posted:
“We are still in Kelowna. We woke to a huge snow storm and I don’t think planes are moving right now. His BP was pretty stable overnight and he’s resting well . . . no idea when we will get to Van but eventually we will.
“Thanks for staying on this crazy ride.
“Love to you all.”
Later Monday, she wrote:
“We have FINALLY arrived in Van — no real updates — he’s getting the care he needs and we are where we need to be for now.
“We thank you all for the love and support and for just loving our boy and our family.
“#TeamZach is one of a kind of and we are blessed to have each and every one of you a part of it.”
On Thursday night, Jana told me that Zach’s medical team has decided that peritoneal dialysis “isn’t working well for him anymore and he will be having a hemo catheter placed” on Friday.
Once Zach’s situation stabilizes, he and Jana will return home, after which his care will be placed in the hands of the staff at a hospital in Trail, B.C., which is about 30 km south of Robson.
If you are interested in being a living kidney donor, perhaps to help Zach or anyone else in need of a kidney, more information is available here:
Living Kidney Donor Program
St. Paul’s Hospital
6A Providence Building
1081 Burrard Street
Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6
Toll free: 1-877-922-9822
“Skully White is known around Abbotsford as a charitable guy,” wrote Vikki Hopes of the Abbotsford News. . . . Hopes then went on to chronicle many of White’s contributions to the community and, believe me, there are a lot of them. . . . Now, though, Hopes is taking charity to a whole new level. . . . “He’s donating a kidney to one of his customers, Tim Hiscock,” Hopes wrote. . . . Hopes’ story of how this all came about is right here.