Thushani's mum's last journey.
Thushani's mum came to NZ this March to see her and heartbreakingly, on the 15th of October, she passed away.Auckland
Thushani is a Sri Lankan PhD student at the University of Otago and this is her mother's story.
Her mother (P.L. Hemawathie; Passport number: N8443880) came to NZ this March to visit Thushani and her husband (Navin). She planned to go back to Sri Lanka after 3 months, her return flight was on the 29th May 2020.
Other than her long-term hypertension and diabetes mellitus, she was doing very well and did all her household work independently. She was completely mentally sound before coming here. However, due to the current pandemic, she couldn't find a flight home and got stuck here.
She was happy when New Zealand eased the restrictions and was hopeful about going back home. Unfortunately, the 2nd lockdown was a huge trauma for her. The next day (12th of August), she had a seizure for the first time in her life and they admitted her to the emergency department at the Auckland DHB. Her hospital bill and the ambulance charges were expensive, costing approximately NZD 3000.
But two weeks later she started to decline, and she became bedbound. She missed her Sri Lankan companionship and the environment. The doctor who managed her advised her to send her back soon to do the long-term follow up, as the environment changes and the language barrier here in New Zealand may worsen the condition.
Thushani heard about a repatriation flight to Sri Lanka. Despite its cost (NZD 4500), she booked a ticket for her with the assistance services. But even though she’d boarded the plane, the Singapore airline refused to take her mom. Singapore Airlines returned her, saying Thushani's mom was in a panicked state, started tearing up and complained that she did not want to go. Thushani and her husband were left extremely helpless, as they were not financially stable to do her long-term treatment in New Zealand. Thushani is on the Otago doctoral scholarship and the current incurred medical costs are way beyond their financial status.
However, they decided to start the treatment here, and keep their hopes up to send her back soon. She had her outpatient neuro day-stay on the 30th of September of 2020. The doctors wanted to admit Thushani's mother and do further investigations. She stayed for 2 weeks and underwent many stressful investigations (MRI, EEG, Full body CT, a lot of blood tests, etc.). But her clinical condition was deteriorating day by day despite the treatments.
This Monday the doctors informed them that she was having "Metabolic Encephalopathy”. This meant that all her body minerals and other chemicals were going out of control causing extensive brain damage.
She became unconscious and the doctors started palliative care, but heartbreakingly, on the 15th of October, she passed away.
The estimated cost for her hospital stay is NZD 29430.67. On top of the trauma and grief, these huge hospital bills have turned their lives upside down. They realised that they need to ask for help.
I am immensely grateful for anything you can do to help her lift the burden, and I thank you for your time in reading this.
Niranjan Herath's involvement (page creator)
I am a good friend of Thushani and her husband (Navin), who have run out of options for paying this hospital bill.
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These funds will be used to pay Thushani's mum's hospital bills.
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This page was created on 16 Oct 2020 and closes on 16 Nov 2020.