Jana Tremblay, a Kidney Mom from Robson B.C., posted this on Facebook recently:
“My heart is heavy these days . . . watching people cry ‘freedom’ over stopping the spread of this virus, and protecting our vulnerable is getting really tough to take. It’s a small kick to my heart every time I read it. PTSD flashbacks of watching him on life support flash in my brain. It’s hurtful and selfish.
“Your supposed loss of freedom is NOT worth more than my son’s life . . . or anyone’s for that matter!!! It’s just NOT.”
Four sentences and you can feel Jana’s frustration bursting from each of them.
Her teenage son, Zach, is in need of a kidney transplant, and has been for a while now. These days, he travels three times a week from Robson to Trail in order to undergo hemodialysis.
You have no idea how many people just like Zach are walking among us. You have no idea how many recipients of organ transplants are walking among us. You have no idea how many other people with medical issues are walking among us.
Most of them also will have compromised immune systems, meaning they are at high risk of contracting COVID-19, be it Delta, Omicron or some other incoming variant.
And, if you are vaccine-hesitant or an anti-vaxxer, let me tell you something else — while you haven’t yet showed up for your first vaccination, some people are getting No. 4.
A kidney transplant friend in Edmonton got No. 4 on Feb. 2. My wife, Dorothy, is waiting and hoping that she soon will get No. 4.
So, please, do the right thing and get vaccinated.
BTW, if you are vaccine-hesitant or an out-and-out anti-vaxxer, you should know that, as Amanda Connolly of Global News reported, “there appears to be growing consensus among Canadian organ transplant specialists about requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for patients looking to be placed on the wait-list for an organ donation.”
In fact, the Canadian Society of Transplantation has updated its guidance and now is prompting “any provincial and regional programs to be transparent if they choose to implement the rule.”
That complete story is right here.
Meanwhile, Chad Carswell of Hickory, N.C., won’t be getting the kidney transplant that he needs because he refuses to get vaccinated. “I was born free; I’ll die free,” he told The Washington Post. . . . Carswell, 38, has been doing hemo-dialysis since July 2020. . . . Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Hospital has a policy that recipients and donors must be fully vaccinated. Transplant patients are at high risk for severe illness from COVID-19. They take anti-rejection medications that result in compromised immune systems. . . . The hospital told The Post in a statement that its policy“follows the current standard of care in the United States, which is to vaccinate all patients on waiting lists or being evaluated for transplant. We understand that some patients may not wish to be vaccinated. In this case, patients can opt to be evaluated at another transplant center.” . . . Carswell, who has had both of his legs amputated due to complications from diabetes, said he has had COVID on two occasions. . . . Why won’t he get vaccinated? The Post reported right here that Carswell “does not believe in conspiracy theories about the vaccines, but remains skeptical about how they were developed.” . . .
Carswell told The Post: “There is not a situation in this world that I’ll get a vaccine. If I’m laying on my deathbed, and they tell me, ‘You have a kidney waiting on you if you get this shot,’ I’ll tell them ‘I’ll see you on the other side.’ ” . . . The Associated Press reported in January that according to the family of D.J. Ferguson, a Massachusetts hospital had denied him a heart transplant because he refused to get vaccinated. And there have been reports that the same thing happened to a woman in Colorado who needs a kidney.
Wilbert Mora, a 27-year-old New York City Police officer, died after a shootout in Harlem on Jan. 21. His family, upon hearing of his death, immediately gave permission for organ transplantation. His heart, liver, kidneys and pancreas went to five different people. There is more on that story right here.
If you are interested in being a living kidney donor, 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
Vancouver General Hospital Living Donor Program – Kidney
Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre
Level 5, 2775 Laurel Street
Vancouver, BC V5Z 1M9
604-875-5182 or 1-855-875-5182
Or, for more information, visit right here.
Want an easy win to feel great? Register to be an organ donor today. It will only #TakeTwoMinutes and you could save a life. Great deed and fuzzy feels without any hassle. #Register2Give taketwominutes.ca