BELIZE CITY—Congestive heart failure (CHF), which mainly occurs when the heart is unable to maintain sufficient blood flow to meet the needs of the body, is one of those deadly conditions that can claim a patient’s life in an instant, and in many cases, the cost of treating such an illness quickly becomes an unbearable burden for underprivileged individuals who also battle chronic financial constraints.
While scores of people have been diagnosed with the condition, treatment depends on the severity and cause of the disease, and today, Amandala met Wilfred Emmanuel Hamilton, Jr., 41, who has been affected by the common, costly, and potentially fatal condition for the past 6 years, and he described his plight, which not only includes sleepless nights, but also the anxiety of covering the exorbitant medical expenses associated with CHF.
He said, “I’m faced with a health issue right now with my heart. I have Congestive Heart Failure, and I was declared medically unfit to work due to my illness, so I’m seeking for help from the public because I need to get an echocardiogram to determine if I am going to take surgery and it costs a lot of money so I’ve been going all around trying to seek help with my situation.”
Hamilton, who learned about his condition in 2008, said he hopes to meet with some heart specialists who will be visiting the country on August 28; but first, he needs to take the echocardiogram, which costs $345, by the 20th of this month, which will be next Wednesday, in order to address his health concerns.
“I would really want to do it [the echocardiogram] because I am concerned about my health since I can drop down and die at any time. I would really appreciate any kind of help, because it’s only by the grace of God that I am still here, so I would want someone to help me before it gets too late”, he told us.
Hamilton related the distress he has experienced since being diagnosed with the sickness.
“I found out I have this condition when my body start to get swollen. I thought it was my kidney, and I was taking medication for that, but it [the medication] was not working, and when I went to the hospital to check, they told me that my heart is two times the size of my fist, and one of the valves in my heart is not working very well.
“That makes me a high risk patient, and I don’t even know if I will reach the age of 42 due to my health. I need to be on special diet and medication every day, and that is what is holding me up because if I don’t do so, it can be fatal to me. The doctors are saying that I need to do something very fast about it because it can get worse. That’s why I am trying to get this echocardiogram to decide if I am going to need surgery, or if they will do something else to help me. I am trying my best to seek help and anyone who is out there that can help me, I would really appreciate it”, a dejected Hamilton mentioned.
Anyone who would like to donate to Hamilton’s cause can make a deposit to account 28955 at St. John’s Credit Union, or contact him at 668-4349.