Today, we celebrate giving back Ike's air compressor and suction machine to the medical equipment company. (Yay!) But while we're celebrating, another trach family is facing one of the most terrifying prospects I can imagine.
They are basically stuck just over 100 km from the Daiichi power plant in Japan. Maleek is trached, and just like Ike used to be, he's absolutely dependent on having a working suction machine so he can breathe. His family managed to find some gas and passable roads so they could get to a hospital that has power off and on. Now they can attempt to charge their equipment and get some rest. But obviously, it is still not safe for Maleek right now. Rolling black-outs to areas with power are expected to affect hospitals for 4-6 hours at a time.
Maleek's family, while living in Japan right now, are from Toronto, and they're trying to get in contact with the Canadian embassy. They haven't received any help, other than advice to "find a local hospital".
What Maleek needs is a way out of Japan. But because of his critical airway, his mom doesn't know if he can handle the 12-hour flight to Toronto. I know there are people looking into seeing if the US Navy has a way to medi-vac him out of Japan, at least maybe to a closer, safer place (like Australia). Or, if there is some way the military (or the Red Cross, or anyone) can get him home, with oxygen and the appropriate supportive equipment on the plane.
People have been contacting the media in Canada to try to get someone to help Maleek, as well.
I'm not sure a plea on a blog is very helpful, but if someone out there knows someone who knows someone… well, you just never know.
Maleek has a facebook page now. It's here. And I have contact information for his family, should anyone reading this know of a way to help. You can send me an email at haikuoftheday at gmail dot com and I can pass the info on to you.
Thanks everyone, for your help and good thoughts.
The Toronto Star has an article up about Maleek. The family is in Tokyo now, still trying to figure out how to leave the country.