Help for Amanda
By LARA PICKFORD-GORDON Thursday, July 19 2012
AMANDA Emmanuel, the 29-year-old crime victim whose left lung shut down due to fluid build-up which was not detected at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex (EWMSC) is to be examined by a doctor at the facility next week.
In response to queries from Newsday, the North Central Regional Health Authority (NCRHA) yesterday said following a complaint, Amanda’s father (Richard Campbell) was contacted last week. The NCRHA said, “she needs surgery”, but would only see a doctor she was familiar with. Amanda’s mother visited the office of the Medical Chief of Staff yesterday morning and according to the NCRHA was “pleased” the case was being sorted out. The NCRHA said Emmanuel has gotten an appointment for the (Thoracic) clinic at 8 am next Tuesday.
Contacted about this development, Campbell said he was worried that the appointment would be five days away. “We don’t know how many things could happen until then,” he said. Campbell visited Newsday on Tuesday to highlight his daughter’s case because after being discharged from EWMSC she continued to have bad coughing and vomiting spells.
A visit to a private medical facility in east Trinidad revealed fluid build up on the left lung which should have been drained. Due to the severity of the condition which developed, Amanda requires surgery but Campbell cannot pay for it at the private facility. Frustration led Campbell to seek help from the Health Ministry, and constituency office of Prime Minister Kamla Persad- Bissessar, which made an intervention and contacted EWMSC. Amanda’s medical problems began on March 29 after she was shot by armed bandits at a friend’s home in San Juan. The bandits stormed the house demanding cash and valuables and during the robbery Amanda was shot nine times about the body, her friend Zamora Marcella was shot five times. Both women were taken to EWMSC for treatment. Amanda spent two months in hospital and was discharged in May with a mild cough. She was referred to the St Joseph Health Facility for further treatment of her leg wound. The injured leg got infected and she was back at EWMSC. Surgery was done to treat the infection and Amanda spent a few weeks in hospital. Persistent coughing and vomiting continued during this time but she was told that this would clear up. She was discharged from hospital and when her condition did not improve, she was taken to a private facility for treatment.
In an interview, the mother of two children ages seven and five said her “spirit dropped” when she saw the x-ray at the private hospital and got an explanation of the state of her lungs. She said a chest tube was inserted but this was left for a week and much of the focus of medical attention when she was at EWMSC was on her injured right leg.
While Amanda’s friend has recovered from her injuries, she is still nursing ailments. The sales representative with Guardian Life has been off the job since the robbery and said bills are piling up. She said it has been frustrating trying to cope. Her family has been rallying around her but the situation is difficult for everyone. “This situation came out of the blue. When I think I am over one thing, another thing crops up,” she sighed.