For every child we help, it feels like there are hundreds more in need. We recently called upon our Gethrr community to help Kiernan, a three-year-old boy fighting cancer. Your support raised money to offset the burden of medical care and it made a huge difference for Kiernan and his family.
With that recent success under our belt, we want to turn our attention to Layla, who was born ten years ago with a congenital heart defect Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. By the time she was six months old, she’d already endured two open heart surgeries.
Despite her treatment, Layla went into heart failure in January 2008, and was quickly placed on a transplant list. With some luck, she received her new heart just before her first birthday – something her family was relieved to be celebrating.
As in so many of these cases, Layla and her new heart encountered countless challenges, including rejection, infections, tumors, and disorders. It has not been easy and while there have been ups and downs, Layla continued to be a child at heart and proceed with a loving and infectious smile.
In 2016, Layla’s luck once again took a turn for the worse and she was diagnosed with cardiac allograft vasculopathy, a coronary artery disease specific to transplants that narrows the coronary vessels and has no cure. With the hope that it wouldn’t progress quickly and that medication would help, Layla’s parents continued to hope.
However, the disorder spread quickly and as parents, Layla’s mom and dad faced an unimagineable choice. They could take her home knowing she would not have much time or re-list her for a second heart transplant. After being turned down by several hospitals because of the risks, two hospitals offered to do the complicated procedure and give Layla the chance she needs now more than ever.
The crushing blow of hospital and medical coverage is now complicated by the cost of relocating to Virginia. Layla’s original cardiologist moved to the University of Virginia’s Children’s Hospital, which is where she is headed for her new heart. She will need to stay for at least the first year after her transplant. She could be transported any moment and her family needs to relocate and move as soon as possible because Layla’s life depends on this opportunity.
A smart, fashionable girl with a constant smile and a knack for singing and dancing has fought every day of her young life to survive. It’s been a constant testament to her parent’s love and support and at this time, they need help to continue waging this battle for their daughter’s life. Any donations will go to support relocation and medical expenses their insurance refuses to cover. The cost will be incredible, but the risks are too much to do anything less than everything.
We’ve seen what a tremendous source of help can be provided when our community comes together to help someone in need. Right now, Layla’s family needs our help and we want to give her as much love and support as possible. Please check out Layla’s gofundme page and consider making a donation. Any amount brings Layla one step closer to the healthy childhood she deserves.