Maureen Kennah-Hafstein has been receiving great support from the community but her situation remains desperate.
Kennah-Hafstein was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease 12 years ago at age 49. She has been on the wait list in B.C. for Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) surgery for more than a year. DBS can result in significant improvement in factors such as motor control, quality of life, cognition and emotional well-being.
She explains that a GoFundMe campaign started by her sister has raised almost $30,000.
“With the two silent auctions on the opposite ends of the country, one in Halifax on Sept. 25th and the other in Salmon Arm on Sept. 28th and 29th, we should be making good progress towards the $100,000 goal,” she states in an email.
“I have an assessment appointment at the Mayo clinic in Rochester, Minnesota on Oct. 30th. We have paid the deposit of almost $10,000 and have our flights booked and paid for,” she says, explaining that she has decided to go to the U.S. because her letter-writing campaign does not appear to have had a positive impact on wait times.
“In fact, wait times for DBS surgery in B.C. have gotten even longer over the summer months.”
She explains there is a fixed window when she can get the surgery; if her symptoms are too bad she will no longer be eligible.
“I absolutely cannot wait much longer for surgery as my transition symptoms continue to get worse. A recent appointment with my neurologist confirms that time is running out for me to have a positive outcome from the surgery. She indicated that other than DBS there is nothing left for me in terms of symptom treatments, other than possible experimental treatments that do not have proven or consistent results yet. So as you can see my situation continues to be desperate as I count the days until my appointment in Rochester.”
People in Salmon Arm or elsewhere can help her in three ways: by donating directly to her GoFundMe website at https://ca.gofundme.com/urgent-dbs-surgery-for-maureen; by donating an item for the auction; and by coming to the auction and bidding on some of the items available.
The auction is at the Mall at Piccadilly on Friday, Sept. 28 from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 29 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Bidding closes at 3 p.m. Saturday.
If anyone has anything they would like to donate, they can send Kennah-Hafstein an email so her family can pick up the item or it can be dropped off at her home. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.