As mentioned in a previous post, Jakelinne is a beautiful 8 year old who attends our eating center in Brisas Del Paraiso. We met Jakelinne in August of this year (read more), and were informed of her condition.
She suffers from what is called Tetralogy of Fallot, which is a rare and complex heart defect and occurs in about 5 of every 10,000 babies. Open-heart surgery, either soon after birth or later in infancy, is the most successful treatment. Unfortunately, this was unknown to Jakelinnes' parent.
Jakelinne was born on the mountain with help from a midwife with little medical knowledge. Around age 4, her parents became concerned with Jakelinne's inability to walk, and decided to make the 8 hour journey to the nearest hospital. There, they were vaguely told about her condition and explained the need for immediate surgery. The hospital wanted to charge a large amount of money to transfer her via ambulance to the city where the surgery could be performed. Unable to provide the ambulance fee, the family returned to Brisas.
TRAVELING TO AND FROM BRISAS TO PICK UP JAKELINNE
A few years later, becoming desperate, the Perez family decided to send Jakelinne with a family member to neighboring Guatemala with the hope that maybe there, access to medical care could be obtained. A few days later, Jakelinne returned home the same way as she left. In Guatemala, they faced a similar, complicated process.
While in Brisas, I asked if someone could provide a diagnosis for her condition. No one seemed to really know what was wrong with her. Our hope was to provide for medication or any sort of prescription needed.
Her parents shared that her enjoyment was to sit by the doorway and watch the kids play, after a while, she would climb into bed and go to sleep. Part of Jakelinne's problem is that she tires very easily.
Standing on the side lines was not an option for us; we needed to know her condition in order to implement a solution to help this precious little girl.
AT A HOTEL WITH JAKELINNE AND HER PARENTS:
I spoke with her parents and told them to be ready, we were going to take Jakelinne to the doctor.
Last week we climbed the mountain under rain and plenty of mud. We saw evidence of mudslides where most of the trail had vanished. However, this was not enough to keep us from fulfilling our mission.
Using connections by local volunteers, we were able to transport and admit Jakelinne to a hospital in San Pedro Sula.
After a week of tests and lab works, she is ready for surgery. The next step was to move Jakelinne from San Pedro to the capital, Tegucigalpa, to have the surgery. Unfortunately, the hospital there is not taking patients due to a strike.
We continue to pray and believe that if God has allowed Jakelinne to come this far, He will continue to open doors.
Our volunteers have been attending to Jakelinne and her mother by bringing them food, clothes, toiletries, and toys.
We ask for you to keep Jakelinne in your prayers. We need a hospital in which to have a surgery, and we need this surgery to be successful.
JAKELINNE AT THE HOSPITAL READY FOR SURGERY
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