A Family’s Quest for Hope

Teh Ghee Lim and his wife, Zen Meilani, travelled from Penang, Malaysia to seek treatment for their 1-year-old daughter, Ping Ann who suffers from Congenital Thrombocytopenia SLFN14 Mutation, a rare blood disease.

Through her young life, Ping Ann has had to spend most of her time in hospitals and due to the low platelet count in her body, she has to diligently get blood transfusion weekly. After consulting many specialists in hope to find a suitable treatment for Ping Ann, her parents finally found that the National University Hospital here in Singapore was able to provide what they needed. They then came to Singapore to prepare for a Haploidentical Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplant.

All was going well as they worked up to the transplant, but unfortunately, Ping Ann had a brain intraparenchymal haemorrhage just 2 weeks before the transplant was scheduled, and had to immediately be admitted into the Paediatric ICU on the 2nd day of Chinese New Year given her critical condition.

Upon Ping Ann’s admission into the PICU, her parents were also offered a stay at the Ronald McDonald House, which would allow them to be just a few steps away from their child. Recalling the first time they visited the House, they likened it to their own home; which gave them comfort despite being in a trying situation.

Prayers were answered when Ping Ann was in the clear from her brain haemorrhage and successfully underwent her stem cell transplant, with her donor being no other than Ghee Lim himself! This also meant mum, Zen was the main caregiver to Ping Ann while dad was recovering too and she found strength in the form of our RMHC staff members, who made navigating the journey of solo care easier.

Ping Ann was discharged after 2 months of treatments, with no evidence of rejection and complications.

“We would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank all RMHC staff for the support and help during Ping Ann’s stay at NUH. The Ronald McDonald House really provided us a comfortable environment to rest, enabling us to then be able to take care of our loved ones. A well-maintained facility with all that we needed like laundry and ready-to-eat meals, with friendly staff that not only made us feel welcomed, but treated us like family. We definitely appreciate the arrangement for us to stay in Ronald McDonald House during our difficult time.”

– Mr Teh Ghee Lim

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