Devastated mother pleads for donations as her twin daughters are diagnosed with leukemia and she has money to save only one
Song Lihua, their mother, was told that she had to prepare at least 600,000 yuan for her children's treatment but this is a massive amount for her and so she is seeking donations.
A mother in China is facing the impossible choice after her twin daughters fell critically ill at the same time but she only has money to pay for one of their treatments. The 11-month-old twins, Ma Yu and Ma Rui, were both diagnosed with leukemia. Both the children were born in Dalian, east China, to a farming family. 40-year-old Song Lihua, their mother, was told by her children's doctors that she had to submit at least 600,000 yuan ($86,304) for their treatment but unfortunately this is a massive amount for her and her partner, Ma Xinqiang.
In a desperate attempt to save the children, Song and Ma sold the family home in Zhuanghe for about 300,000 yuan ($43,152) but this is only enough to pay for one of the twins. Song told the Daily Mail: "Some people told me to give up on one of them, others suggested I should let them draw the lots. But I have to save them both. If I did let one go, I would not be able to forgive myself for the rest of my life." The mother-of-three, who also has a 14-year-old daughter, is absolutely devastated.
The twins were born on November 23, 2017, in the XinXing Village of Daxing Town. According to Song, the babies were healthy and fine when they were born and the entire family was excited about their arrival. Then, in June this year, Ma Rui had a high fever and was taken to the Dalian Children's Hospital by her concerned parents.
Once there, the diagnosis given by the doctor sent shockwaves through the family. The toddler had acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is a rare type of cancer that is known to affect the white blood cells. The disease requires immediate treatment for any chance of survival. The hospital then suggested that the mother bring the other baby for a checkup as well and unfortunately she was diagnosed with the same condition.
Song said: "The doctors said they were not born with the illness, and it was caused by their living environment." The mother suspects that the twins fell critically ill because their grandparents had wrapped up all the windows in the house with plastic sheets in the winter last year to keep the rooms warm for the babies. According to Cancer Research UK, the risks for developing acute lymphoblastic leukemia include exposure to radiation, smoking, being overweight and having a weak immune system.
The couple has already spent about 250,000 yuan ($35,960) in treatment for the twins in just the past five months. Song has said that she plans to save her daughters no matter what. Speaking of the chemotherapy the children already have to undergo, the mother said: "They suffered so much." Song was told by the doctors that the twins' condition is currently unstable and she hopes she will be able to take them to Beijing to get better treatment.
The mother repeated: "The doctor said if they don't have transplants, the cost would be 600,000 yuan ($86,304) for two; but if they have transplants, it will cost 800,000 to one million yuan ($1,15,072 to $1,43,845) each. I will try my best. I will try my best." She pleaded for help through the Daily Mail saying: "I hope the public could help me and my family to overcome the difficulties.' She added: 'Both babies need to be saved. I can't prefer one to the other."
Song and her partner have set up accounts on a few Chinese fundraising sites including Aixin Chou and Shuidi Chou in an effort to collect donations to pay for the treatments. The goal is to raise 300,000 yuan ($43,152). Together with the 300,000 yuan they are getting from the sale of their house, the donations will be able to save both girls. On their Aixin Chou account, the couple has received 40,480 yuan ($5,822.85) from 1,231 donors.