President Uhuru Kenyatta responded to the plea of five-year-old Ethan Macharia after the ailing boy penned a letter to Kenyatta and other Kenyans of goodwill on Wednesday, February 19.
Macharia and his mother Veronica Njeri had been stuck in India for weeks unable to raise Ksh3.5 million for brain surgery.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday, February 28, announced that Macharia, who is admitted at Forties Hospital in India, would now undergo a specialised operation after Kenyatta’s intervention.
Officials of the Kenyan Embassy in Indian with Ethan Macharia and his mother Veronica Njeri at Forties Hospital, India on Friday, February 28, 2020.
“The message from the president was delivered to the mother and the hospital by Kenya’s Ambassador to India Willy Bett. Ethan’s mother, Veronica expressed her gratitude to the president for helping her out in her moment of desperation,” a tweet by the Ministry of Foreign affairs read.
Macharia’s woes started in November 2018 after he injured himself while playing. The brain damage caused seizures that worsened over the years. The Standard, on Wednesday, February 19, highlighted his plea, attracting the president’s attention.
“My son was leading a normal life until the unfortunate incident that changed our lives forever. We have spent the last 14 months trying to raise money for what doctors call a palliative VNS surgery that’s supposed to suppress his daily seizures as a result of the fall.
“This is the second time we are here in the last 14 months and we couldn’t raise enough money the first time,” Njeri stated.
Ethan’s doctors in India stated that they had used multiple drugs to control his condition, with little progress.
This is reportedly an option in only a subgroup of pharmacoresistant epileptic patients, where an epileptogenic focus is localized and amenable to surgical intervention.
The young boy aspires to be a footballer.
According to statistics by the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), more than 10,000 Kenyans seek treatment from India annually.
Kenyans are attracted by the affordable cost of treatment in the country that is widely known for medical tourism.
Ethan Macharia, his mother Veronica Njeri (pink), officials from the Kenyan Embassy in India and his doctors at the Forties hospital on Friday, February 28, 2020.