Vadodara/ Anand: A 22-year-old woman from Umreth village of Anand district, who was suffering from a rare nerve disease, recently got a new lease, thanks to the support she received from donors.
Preema Shah, hailing from a poor family, was battling the rare Guillain-Barre syndrome. According to doctors at Karamsad-based Shree Krishna Hospital, Guillain-Barre syndrome affects one in a population of a lakh going to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.
In this condition, the immune system of a patient's body mistakenly attacks part of the patient's peripheral nervous system leading to weakness, numbness, and tingling eventually causing paralysis. The cause of this condition is unknown but it is typically triggered by an infectious illness like the stomach flu or a lung infection.
Preema was in the intensive care unit (ICU) for 40 days under the observation of a team of intensivists at the hospital led by Dr. Sunil Chhajwani. Her widow's mother Usha Shah was not in a position to pay for her treatment even as her medical bill was mounting during her ICU stay.
"We decided not to give up this case and pledged for a donation through crowdsourcing funds through various means like writing letters and emails to donors and by making appeals through funding platforms," said a hospital official, adding that Rs 4 lakh were collected through such means for her treatment.
"We are grateful to the hospital which collected this fund for treatment and the doctors for curing her," said Preema's friend Karan Shah, adding that Preema's widow mother earns Rs 10 per hour by working as a cook.
According to the hospital authorities, it has never turned away any patient for lack of funds.
Last year, the hospital treated over 6,000 patients from BPL families and around 22,000 patients from economically disadvantaged families providing treatment at an estimated cost of Rs 9 crore incurred in hospital wards and ICUs.