01 Jul In it Together – The Vueti Family
On a Friday afternoon in late May, 2 year old Luse Marama was taken by her parents to a health centre after developing a fever. Two days later, her fever deteriorated and had to be rushed to the Colonial War Memorial Hospital. Luse was in a critical condition.
‘We thought we were going to lose her. She had completely shut down and wasn’t breathing. She had to be given oxygen,’ says her mum, Merewalesi Sakitora.
‘Being admitted at the Pediatric Intensive care unit and put on oxygen for support, there was a slim chance that Luse was going to make it, but I prayed for our daughter, ‘ adds Luse’s father, Epeli Vueti.
‘It was a tough time for us and all we had was hope and faith that Luse was going to come out of this.’
Epeli did not leave the hospital and would be by her daughter’s bedside in the evenings while mum Merewalesi went home to rest.
‘At the Ronald McDonald Family Room, we were able to have breakfast together when my wife came back in the morning and I was able to rest there while she looked after Luse during the day,’ says Epeli.
Epeli & Merewalesi were able to meet and talk to other parents who were going through the same ordeal and became like family.
‘We’re so thankful for the Ronald McDonald Family Room as it has helped us ease the burden of us worrying about a place to take a break or have a hot cuppa and even to do our laundry. It has also been very helpful for families who came from afar,’ says Merewalesi.
After spending 28 days at the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and in a critical condition, Luse’s condition improved. She was moved to the wards and her parents were able to have breakfast with her at the family room.
After a little over 50 days in hospital Luse and her parents were able to return home.