Please read our story on our COVID-19 experience with our beloved mother Blia Lee Lor, who passed away from COVID complications
on November 7th, 2020.
Blia is a single mother who left behind 4 sons, 3 daughters and countless grandchildren who loves and will miss her dearly! With the help from her uncle/brother she was able to bring all her sons overseas and supported them with everything that she had while helping out her daughters as much as she could. She helped raised over 10+ grandchildren. That being said she was a strong, loving, caring and hardworking mother/grandmother.
Our mother/grandmother, Blia was diagnosed on October 21st, 2020 with COVID. The virus was contracted from a family member who unknowingly had it and spent time with her because of how much that person loved her and missed her. She was a person who loved her children so much that she would sacrifice everything she had to see them happy. She was loved by so many people and she also loved so many.
She was brought into the ER that day when she was diagnosed with COVID. Her symptoms started a few days after the exposure, which were difficulty in breathing, chills, fevers, and extreme fatigue. She couldn't breathe anymore or even have the strength to walk. She was admitted to the hospital on an ICU floor and they were able to ease her breathing with oxygen therapy instead of the invasive method of intubation/ventilation. After she was admitted it was an ongoing battle for family to get information from the nurses or doctors, multiple complaints were made to patient relations in regards to the lack of communication from the hospital staff to family, lack of communication being made between the patient and the nursing staff because translators were not being used and family wasn't being called either. Blia was 82 years old, pretty independent, healthy, and she was able to make her needs known but without speaking English she wasn't able to make her needs known or understand what was going on. Family would have been there with her 24/7but due to the restrictions no one was allowed to visit. She had her cellphone and was able to call family to say she was hungry or she needed something. Family would call the nurses and tell them what she wanted. She was there for about a week and a half and responded to the treatments. Her oxygen requirements were still high and due to a poor decision made by her doctor and not informing the family that he thought she was stable enough to be transferred to a long-term acute care (LTAC) facility. She called her son shortly after being transferred to the LTAC saying she was having a hard time breathing. It took forever to get a hold of someone to help her and the family found out she wasn't even on the right oxygen therapy. Once again communication was emphasized and family was there to help communicate if there was any problems. The kind of care was questioned and family was reassured that they were fully capable of taking care of her. They ended up sedating her and restraining her because she was getting restless and removing things. Family wasn't called to ask what she wanted and we highly doubt translators were used. Due to the language barrier Blia Lee Lor didn't receive the same kind of treatment and care that one would receive if they did speak English. Blia Lee Lor was not given the opportunity to live and beat COVID due to the health care disparities that exist in our hospitals and communities. Minorities have a higher chance of facing health care disparities because health care providers don't want to deal with patients who don't speak English or it's a hassle to call interpreter services so they can do their job correctly. They probably thought she was an old lady who doesn't speak English and won't survive COVID but she fought hard every single day alone so that one day she will be able to come home to her loved ones. They never gave her a chance to live.
We would like to donate the funds from this gofund me page to a minority family who is facing difficult times during the pandemic and with the holidays coming up. We want to raise awareness of COVID-19, it's real, it spreads like wildfire in a household, and please listen to the warnings and advice from health officials. Please wear masks and social distance. Self quarantine if you start having any COVID symptoms. Please be there for your family or friend who doesn't speak English. Fight for equal treatment amongst the community.
Thank you for taking the time to read Blia’s story.
- Elizabeth Hang
- Mai Yang
- Young Kue
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