The Pandemic affects more than just health...
Written by: Malinn Kostelecky
A lot has happened in our community since our last blog post. The life-threatening coronavirus, also known as COVID-19 entered our country and changed the lives of many.
In this time of unprecedented crisis in our country and in our area, children with cancer are among the most vulnerable. Cancer treatments destroy their immune systems, making it impossible to fight off most any virus, much less COVID-19. As a result, families are being impacted by this crisis in extremely difficult ways. As this pandemic crisis unfolds, families are facing even more difficult challenges.
Parents working in essential jobs like hospitals, restaurants and grocery stores, are having to take unpaid leaves or furloughs to protect their vulnerable children. Many others are facing layoffs and are unsure how they will pay their bills.
Families often travel many miles for cancer treatments and rely on nonprofit housing facilities for lodging. Additionally, bone marrow transplant patients need transitional housing upon discharge, so they are close to the hospital. The facilities that normally house these families have closed due to COVID-19.
Hospitals have enacted strict visitation rules limiting one parent/caregiver per child resulting in an inability for many parents to leave their child’s hospital room for meals. Stress, anxiety and fear are at an all-time high as parents navigate childhood cancer during this pandemic.
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