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Treatment During Covid 19

Since March 2020, Coronavirus has affected everyone’s lives. From Self-Isolation to lockdown, people have had to adapt to a new way of living. For many the fear of catching coronavirus has had a significant affect on their lives.

For families with children undergoing treatments for cancer this fear is heightened. Many cancer treatments like Chemotherapy can significantly lower the bodies immune system, leaving children more susceptible to Covid19, and less able to fight its effects on the body.

Amy was diagnosed with leukaemia on November 13th 2018 aged just 5 years old. Currently Amy is in the maintenance stage of chemotherapy which is having an effect on her immune system. Amy’s mum Faye tells us more about how this has affected her family:

“At the beginning of the outbreak, I was getting down and I felt anxious. I would watch the news, it was like a strange movie, spending all this time on the ward, her being ill, and now this pandemic, I was thinking what can go wrong next? So, I’ve had to try to stop watching the news, that’s how I’ve coped.

“We know what we’ve got to do now. We don’t panic and we just stay in our own little bubble”

Although Amy is currently in maintenance chemotherapy, which means she can be at home, her ongoing treatment and side effects mean she still has to go to hospital.

“The most nervous bit is taking her to hospital. Me and Chris normally both go as we want to speak with her Consultant, but now one of us has to stay with the two other kids and because of the germs, the hospital says only one parent should go.”

Just as coronavirus started, Amy was put on a new drug and got a horrible rash. I was worried about not going with her, with her skin so sensitive, it was really hard. I was worried she was going to have to be admitted again, because it’s there in hospital, that she would pick something up, so I’m fine with being cooped up”

Like many other families, as well as being on lock-down Amy’s family have had to be extra vigilant, self-isolating and cleaning to ensure that Amy is kept safe.

“The cleanliness drives you mad. We’re always vigilant anyway and Amy is quite good. I have to say to her this coronavirus is serious for you Amy you must wash your hands. It doesn’t frighten her, it’s just got to be that way to drill it into her.

It’s just like when she had to know the seriousness of her needing to take her medication, if I’d been soft and not said if you don’t take your medication you’ll go to heaven – I don’t know if she’d have done it. I never over-protect her, I have to be open.”

Regardless of everything Amy and her mum Faye are going through they still look on the bright side.

“Because for us, we’ve spent so much time confined in hospital, Amy and I are used to each other for company. She’s not so used to normal freedoms and the daily routine of school, so in a way we’re used to being cooped up. We’re not getting cabin fever too much, the fact she’s got her brother and sister here is good for her.

“We’re getting in a little routine now, we’ve been so lucky with the weather! In England, normally you feel a bit fed up when it’s raining, but we have been seeing the sun every day. We think what we can be grateful for? and we make the most of it.”

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