Hettie Kruger is loved by one and all who meet her. Following complications from a brain aneurism last year her and her family are still fighting every day for just an ounce of normality. This is her story.....
16 December 2016. Day of reconciliation.
Hettie and her husband, Johan were at the wedding reception of friends in Vanderbijlpark when Hettie suffered from a massive brain aneurism. They were dancing on Afrikaans music when the world came crushing down on them. They could not find an available neuro surgeon, so they had to get her transferred to Pretoria as soon as possible. She was only operated on 16 hours later.
After the operation that took place in Pretoria she was situated in the MICU of Montana Hospital for 90 days. The only movement they got from her was her eyes opening and closing. During her 90 day stay in the MICU she was supposed to get transferred back home to Durban, but she picked up the MRSA virus. After this episode she was transferred to a rehabilitation centre for 17 days.
During the last week of rehabilitation Joan and Carien, two of her daughters, went to go see one of the doctors. They were told that Hettie suffered such severe brain damage that she would not get any better. They had to move her from the rehab in Pretoria to a Step down facility in Durban. Their medical aid refused to pay for the ambulance to transfer Hettie back home so they had to make a plan, and do so quickly. With a lot of help and grace they got Hettie back home.
The medical aid only granted Hettie two weeks stay at the step down facility, then they had to make a plan again. She can move her left hand now. They see a massive difference from the time she was in Pretoria. One step forward, two steps back. Her feeding tube got infected and she was admitted to Uhmlanga hospital to take out the feeding tube and move the tube, they also realised she got infected with another super bug.
She was transferred back to the step down for one week then she got sent home for professional home care. Their medical aid pays for two live in nurses with all the equipment she needs. BUT they have to sustain the two nurses and also pay for Hettie’s food, medication and also her nappies.
When she got back home they also got new, better nurses. Two weeks later she started moving a lot. Today she can take her own left foot out from under the bed sheet and also take it of the bed. When she gets a hold of someone, she tries to pull herself up.
She tries to speak but the tracheostomy makes it very hard for her to communicate with them. She also gets formula through her feeding tube due to the tracheostomy.
Hettie’s formula, Ensure or Nutrisure, costs R200 per bottle and one bottle lasts 2 ½ days. Her medication costs around R1100 per month and her nappy’s is R100 per pack and it lasts 2 days. Washing powder and toilet paper doesn’t last too long as well.
Their household expenses more than doubled in the last six months and they don’t have a dual income anymore.
Long story short, their monthly expenses is around R10 000 more than Johan’s salary. So far they could pay for all these things with the help of generous donations and favours from wonderful, hearty people.