5-Year-Old NJ Patient Connected with Life-Saving Medical Care for Rare Disease

Please take a moment to read about adorable 5 year old Meredith’s healthcare journey to treat a rare condition that she was diagnosed with in December 2022.

Born prematurely at 29 weeks, Meredith only weighed 2 lbs. 12 oz and spent 3 months in the NICU before being able to go home. She is a fighter in every sense of the term and has overcome so many obstacles in her young life. While battling the flu in late December 2022, she threw up blood requiring her parents to immediately rush her to their local emergency room.  After several tests and consults with a pediatric specialist medical team, she was diagnosed with a rare condition called “Non-Cirrhotic Portal Hypertension” with Esophageal Varices. Without treatment, it can lead to severe complications, such as chronic bleeding, abdominal swelling, and liver failure.

When her mother Theresa called Angel Flight NE looking for help to get Meredith to Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago, we were happy to assist her. With the help of The Alexion Charitable Foundation, we were able to coordinate a flight from Philadelphia to Chicago as well as help with ground transportation to get Meredith to critically needed surgery. We told her mother as soon as they can return home to simply call, and we will make all of the arrangements to get them a flight back.

In a recent message from Meredith’s mom, Theresa said:
“Being told your child has a rare disease is scary enough, but being told you must travel over 750 miles away from home for life-saving surgery adds to the reality of Meredith’s diagnosis. Her condition is so specialized, there are very few doctors who perform the critical surgery on children that Meredith desperately needs. Her diagnosis and upcoming surgery is already stressful, so not having to worry about flights and the cost associated with air travel to make this trip has helped us SO MUCH! The logistics felt impossible and overwhelming without help and we are so thankful for Angel Flight NE helping Meredith and our family!!”

We are able to transform patients’ lives – like Meredith’s –  who need to access life-saving medical care with the amazing support of our compassionate, giving commercial aviation partners and coordinate ground transportation with generous grants from organizations like The Alexion Charitable Foundation. And support of individuals, like you, is also vital to ensuring distance is never an obstacle for patients and families in need.

Together we are making the “Impossible, Possible” for patients and families in need of accessing life-saving medical care.

As with all of our patients, Meredith and her family will always have a place in our heart and will remain a part of the Angel Flight NE extended family. We assured her mother that we are here for Meredith as long and as often as she needs our assistance to access the vital care and treatment she needs to battle her rare disease and continued healthcare crisis.

Mission/Flight requests – like Meredith’s – happen daily and we are privileged to have the opportunity to not only fly but deeply care for all who turn to us for help at difficult times in their lives.  We are here for her for as long and as often as she needs our help and to ensure the best possible outcome. Please keep Meredith and her family along with all of our patients in your thoughts and prayers.

We are proudly celebrating our 27th year of service having scheduled over 108,000 flights for patients who have traveled  more than 15 million miles to 750+ medical facilities throughout the United States since our founding in 1996.

Thank You and God Bless You for your support and belief in our healing mission.

With your help, we can ensure that distance is never an obstacle for patients, like Aliana and the thousands of others we assist yearly.

Warmest regards,
Fr. Larry & the AFNE Staff

Posted Under: Thankful Thursday

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