This journey started on March 7, 2010. My dad, Anthony (Tony) Welch, was working as a registered nurse at SCRMC in Laurel, MS, where he had been employed for almost 15 years. It was a Sunday morning, and he happened to be called in that day for a surgery. Shortly after arriving to work, he suffered a heart attack. He was quickly transferred to FGH in Hattiesburg, MS, and underwent an emergency triple bypass. It is my belief that had he not been on-call or gotten called in that morning, our journey would be vastly different. I still get chills every time I tell that story to someone. Unfortunately, it left him disabled and unable to return to the job he loved so dearly.
Over the last seven years, he has had to face many other challenges and obstacles in his path. He has had a defibrillator and pacemaker placed, was diagnosed with type II diabetes, has underwent multiple surgical procedures and deals with multiple other issues that come with decreased heart function. In 2014, his cardiologist referred him to Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans to begin looking into the possibility of a heart transplant. At that time, the medical team said he would only have one year left with the heart he had. Unfortunately, he was denied placement on the list due to pre-existing medical issues at that time.
Fast forward to September 2017, he was referred back to Ochsner's to be re-evaluated again. This time, the medical team decided to place him on a continuous IV of Dobutamine, which is a medicine that helps the heart pump. He will be a candidate for a heart transplant as early as March 2018, given nothing changes medically.
Last Friday (11/3), Ochsner's asked him to come there to be admitted due to an elevated creatinine level. As of now, that level has not declined much. The medical team at Ochsner's must now decide if a LVAD (left ventricular assist device) is a viable option for him at this point to make sure his kidneys (and other organs for that matter) do not start to decline in function before he is eligible for a transplant.
This visit is his fourth hospital admission since the beginning of September, three of which have been at Ochsner's. He has Medicare only, so they are billed for the other 20% Medicare does not cover. This fund would help cover any medical bills that come in and help with their travel expenses going back and forth to New Orleans. Eventually (and hopefully), it will also cover costs associated with getting a heart transplant, which is costly.
Now let me brag on my dad for a minute. Prior to his heart attack, I never saw this man stop. He loved his nursing job, loved woodworking, and was always looking for new things to try. The heart attack and what has followed has rendered him unable to engage in any of those things anymore. More than anything, I want to see him active again. I wanted to be able to see him put those scrubs on one more time and head out on a mission. This is the goal- a new heart, a new life.
My family and I are sincerely appreciative of the support, prayers and love we have received throughout his journey. You all hold a special place in our hearts, especially his. I will update the page if anything changes.
Love to all,
Candis Welch Carter
DonationsSee top donations
- BR Sims
- Sheila James
- Gary Bryant
- Elisha Gourley
- Gary Bryant
Organizer and beneficiary
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more