This father's criminal record is stopping him from saving his son's life
A two-year-old boy has been rushed to hospital after his kidney transplant that he was set to receive from his dad was declined, leaving his parents fearing that the new rescheduled date may be too late for their young child.
AJ Dickerson was born prematurely without functioning kidneys, and his mom, Carmellia Burgess, has said that her son has been "fighting for his life since the day he came into this world". The hospital that was set to perform the surgery said that it will reassess the date of the treatment, which may possibly be rescheduled for January 2018. But AJ's family fear that this will be too late for the young boy, who suffered a stroke just a few months ago as a result of his condition.
However, AJ's dad Anthony Dickerson, of Gwinnett County, Georgia, is a 100 percent match for his son. But despite the fact that the father and son are a perfect match, Emory Hospital have decided to delay the transplant surgery, scheduled to take place on October 3, due to the fact that Dickerson was arrested in September for possessing a weapon.
According to CBS 46 TV, the parents feel like the hospital is punishing AJ because of the actions of his father who was arrested last month by the police in Gwinnett County. The arrested took place on September 28, just a few days before the transplant had been scheduled to be completed.
Dickerson, 26, has had plenty of run-ins with the law in the past, with the father having been in and out of jail across the years. His crimes range from numerous misdemeanour theft charges and a first degree forgery charge in 2011. Earlier this month, Dickerson was released on a $2,600 bond after he fled a police officer. He was also charged with possession of a firearm or knife during the commission of attempted felonies.
After he was released, the father wanted to undergo surgery in order to donate a kidney to his son, but the hospital decided to change those plans. After he was released by the police, the hospital wanted to see evidence that he was complying with the terms of his parole, before they went ahead with the transplant.
The parents now say that the hospital is punishing AJ for mistakes that his father made.
"What do he got to do with the mistakes I made? Nothing," Dickerson said.
"It's about my son," said the boy’s mother, Carmella Burgess. "He's been through a lot. It's like we've been waiting on this. And Dad making a mistake shouldn't affect what he wants to do with our son."
"They're making this about Dad," she said. "It's about our two-year-old son."
In a letter to the couple, the hospital said that it would not be proceeding with the transplant before Dickerson showed that he was in compliance with the terms of his parole.
"The Living Donor Transplant Team at Emory has asked Mr. Dickerson for evidence of compliance from his parole officer for the next three months. We will re-evaluate Mr. Dickerson in January 2018 after receipt of his completed documentation."
But AJ's mother feels like January might be too late to save AJ, who weighs just 25 pounds and also requires bladder surgery. When contacted for comment on the case, the hospital said that it prefers not to comment on individual cases, though it did outline its policies regarding organ transplants.
"Guidelines for organ transplantation are designed to maximize the chance of success for organ recipients and minimize the risk for living donors," the hospital said.
It seems pretty harsh to deny a young child the surgery he desperately requires due to the mistake of his father. Hopefully the hospital will see sense and AJ can get on the road to recovery soon.