Supporters Protest Aniyah Dixon’s Removal From Hospital’s Heart Transplant List
There’s a story coming out of Atlanta surrounding a little girl and a hospital’s shocking decision to remove her from a heart transplant list. Fox 5 Atlanta reports that community leaders staged a protest this week in support of Aniyah Dixon. Family members and supporters of Dixon, 10, told the news org that she was born with a heart defect and was put on the heart transplant list last December. She was later admitted to Children’s Healthcare in Atlanta in July where she waited for a new heart. Things apparently went left however and on the day before Thanksgiving, hospital officials told little Aniyah’s family she would be taken off the transplant list.
“The day before Thanksgiving they were given a letter unceremoniously by the administrators here that said no only is she no longer on the transplant list, but that there is nothing else they are willing to do for her,” community activist Derrick Boazman said to Fox 5.
Aniyah’s mother Sophia Dixon is equally disturbed by the news and she told the news station that her daughter has withdrawn after learning that she won’t be getting a new heart.
“She’s very aware of what’s going on with her. And the thought of her not continuing to have life, it disturbs her very badly,” she said. “She doesn’t like to talk about it.”
There’s now a scramble to get Aniyah back on the list to save her life and last week, the hospital readmitted Aniyah after complaints from her family and supporters became public. They told reporters they had located a doctor who was willing to examine Aniyah in Nashville, but she needed to be readmitted to Children’s so her condition could improve before making the trip.
Despite that, community leaders including former state Sen. Vincent Fort, former Atlanta City Councilman Derrick Boazman, and NAACP State Conference President James “Major” Woodall organized a protest outside of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston because it looks like CHOA might have changed its mind.
Aniyah’s supporters were supposed to have a meeting Monday with Children’s CEO Donna Hyland but Fox 5 reports that the meeting NEVER happened. Derrick Boazman is now wondering if there’s a racial issue at hand.
“We went to CHOA in good faith to have a meeting with the CEO. Now we are being told that she is not willing to meet with us. The family asked for our support and we have provided it,” Boazman said. “The unwillingness to meet with community members concerned about this child is shocking,” he added.
At Tuesday’s news conference, Boazman also questioned if the girl’s race had any impact on the hospital’s decision.
“Is it Aniyah’s race that’s part of the issue here? The number of African-Americans who get a transplant here is abysmal,” Boazman said.
Officials at Children’s issued a statement to Fox 5 about the case and noted that decisions to remove someone from a transplant list are based on “a number of factors.” They also previously said that they “cannot provide specific details regarding any patient who is currently in our care or has previously been in our care” due to privacy laws.
“Decisions related to transplants are always made by our compassionate, experienced doctors in coordination with the patient family,” the statement reads in part. “Decisions are based on a number of factors including the condition of the patient and national guidelines, and they often are affirmed by experts at other transplant centers around the country.”
What do YOU think about the Aniyah Dixon case??? We’re sending prayers this little girl’s way.