Thursday, March 19, 2009

Heurese Asks OSF for Help

March 16, 2009

Dear OSF Charity Assistance Program and Sister Judith Ann,

My name is Heurese Joseph and I am from Haiti. I am 30 years old. Dr. John Carroll is helping me write this letter to you since I don’t speak English.

I am humbly requesting an echocardiogram to be done pro bono by OSF through the Charity Assistance Program. I would have it done as an outpatient at HeartCare Midwest. The cardiologist that would read the echocardiogram told Dr. John that he would read it for no charge.

In 2002, Dr. John brought me to OSF for heart valve surgery and closure of a ventricular septal defect. I was very thankful for all the physicians and nurses who took care of me at OSF.

I returned to Haiti in 2002 and Dr. John and his wife Maria returned to Haiti many times during the next six years. Dr. Carroll examined me each year and Haitian Hearts brought me medicine and provided me with echocardiograms in Port-au-Prince.

However in 2008 I became quite ill again and had to give my two young children to my family to care for. I was in congestive heart failure and could not feed my children or myself. I felt like I was dying.

Dr. John examined me again and another echocardiogram showed that I needed repeat heart surgery.

During November, 2008 Haitian Hearts moved me to a guest house in Port-au-Prince for the entire month. I was able to eat three meals a day and did not worry about being kidnapped from my home in the slum.

Since OSF-SFMC would not accept me back last year, Dr. John fortunately found another medical center to do my surgery. In December, 2008 I was successfully operated and have a new aortic valve.

I am living with Dr. John and his family during the last month of my stay in the United States. I feel great for the first time in a long time.

I have no income in Haiti. My mother, who is also very poor, pays equivalent to 90 dollars U.S. every six months for my one room home in Port-au-Prince. The room is about 15 feet by 15 feet. I share it with my 19 year old brother.

I have no running water and cook on a charcoal grill outside my front door. I have electricity occasionally. My hope is to move to a safer and cleaner area of Port-au-Prince with my children when I return to Haiti.

Dr. John stopped my Coumadin today and started me on another type of blood thinner. My surgeon wants me to have an echocardiogram in one week. We have to be sure that my new aortic valve is working properly.

Please allow me to have my echocardiogram done free of charge. I have no funds to pay you.

Thank you for all you did for me in 2002.


Heurese Joseph

P.S. Please forward a copy of this to Sister Judith Ann Duval at OSF Corporate. I know that she would not refuse me.

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