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Jamaican Child Desperately Needs Help

CaribWorldNews, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. Feb. 18, 2009: The parents of a two-year-old Jamaican child are desperately seeking humanitarian help to save the life of their daughter.

Courtney-Ann Brown, the daughter of Andrea and Orlando Brown, desperately needs a bone marrow transplant to stay alive. So far groups like Leaf of Life of New York are trying to help but the cost of the transplant is close to US$500,000.

However, for now,  Leaf of Life`s Jennifer Chalmers says the Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx, NY, has agreed to do a pro bono evaluation to determine whether they can treat baby Courtney-Ann at a reduced cost.

Family members now need a U.S. visa to make the trip from Kingston, Jamaica to New York. Irwine Clare of the Caribbean Immigrant Services last night appealed to those in authority to help make this possible and give the child and her parents some hope.

Little Courty-Ann was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a `cancer that arises in immature nerve cells and affects mainly infants and children,` according to the American Cancer Society.

Courtney-Ann was initially diagnosed with an enlarge lymph node but when the lump on the left of her neck did not disappear, a biopsy was done and it was discovered that she had stage four cancer.

The cancer quickly spread to her bone marrow. So far, Courtney-Ann has undergone extensive treatment, including five cycles of chemotherapy at the University of the West Indies but the hospital does not have the capacity to complete a bone marrow transplant.

`She now needs a bone marrow transplant,` Mrs. Brown said recently. `Basically, we’re begging for help, not asking, we’re begging!`

To help, readers can contact Mrs. Brown at andreabrown2075@yahoo.com or via 876-412-4413.