Removing Barriers – Elly’s story
Elly Moreno-Preciosa is a 6-year-old girl recently diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anemia. Her only cure was a bone marrow transplant.
Fortunately for Elly, her 11-year-old brother was identified as a matching donor. She received her transplant on June 1, 2022.
Both of her parents are hard-working agricultural workers in Northern CA. They live 200 miles from the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, Stanford, which performed the transplant and is continuing treatment until Elly’s immune system is functioning properly.
The Family’s Challenges
Since Elly’s brother was identified as her donor, both parents had to stop working for several months to be individual caregivers for their children. COVID policies do not allow siblings at bedside. Her mother took care of Elly, while her father took care of their son.
Obviously, this had an impact on the family’s limited financial resources.
After the transplant, Elly’s father and brother returned home to work and attend school. But Elly and her Mom remained in the hospital due to complications.
Even after she is released, Elly will require follow-up visits for the next 6-12 months.
That’s a 400-mile round trip.
Obviously, being diagnosed with a life-threatening disease is distressing. When children are involved, worry and fear impact the entire family. The outlook is unknown.
Patient families are concerned about paying the bills while they are unable to work. In Elly’s case, they are also worried about transportation while half of the family is living 200 miles away for continued treatment.
Individually, each of these barriers can be intense. Combined, they can be extremely overwhelming.
The Icla da Silva Foundation removes barriers for patients who require a bone marrow or cord blood transplant. We provide emotional, logistical, and financial support during transplant and treatment.
Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we were able to help Elly’s family with a small grant for rent, transportation, and meals.
Elly is doing well. Her dad and brother travel 400 miles every weekend so the family can be together.
We look forward to learning when everyone is back home. We hope the best for Elly and her family.
Please consider making a donation that will remove barriers for patient families like Elly’s.
With your help, we will continue to make a difference for patients in need of a bone marrow or cord blood transplant.
Written by: Bret Itskowitch