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Yulia Hicks, the North Carolina girl denied a kidney transplant by Duke University surgeons because she was not vaccinated against Covid, will get her new kidney Thursday
Finally, a happy ending.
In December, I wrote about Yulia Hicks, a 14-year-old North Carolina girl denied a lifesaving kidney transplant for the crime of being unvaccinated.
Transplant surgeons at Duke University Hospital told her parents that Yulia could not stay on the transplant list if she did not have a Covid shot, even though she had already had Covid.
The story, which Fox News picked up, led to a wave of publicity - and more than 30 potential donors stepped forward. Fortunately, one was a match.
Now, another North Carolina hospital has stepped up, and Yulia will receive a new kidney from a live donor tomorrow.
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Yulia’s life has not been easy.
She came from Ukraine to the United States in December 2018 and was given up by her first two adoptive families before the Hickses adopted her in 2021. She suffers from Senior Loken Syndrome, a genetic condition that damages her kidneys and eyes.
But she remains optimistic, her mother Christine said in an email.
“Yulia is the most easy-going child I have ever met,” Christine said. “We are looking at one week of hospitalization, and she plans to read, write and play card games.”
Yulia, whose birthday is in June, asked only that she have an early birthday party because she knows she will face months of quarantine after the transplant as her body accepts the new kidney, Christine said.
The family does not know the identity of the donor but hopes to meet him in the years to come to thank him, Christine said. “We ask for prayers for Yulia and her donor for flawless surgeries and painless recoveries for both.”
Meanwhile, the North Carolina legislature is considering “Yulia’s Law,” which would bar transplant discrimination on the basis of Covid vaccination status. The bill overwhelmingly passed North Carolina’s House on May 2 and has passed a first reading in the Senate.
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