Smiling again after surviving critical medical conditions


“GOD gave me a second chance.” These were the exact words from two incredibly fortunate individuals, who survived a couple of life-altering incidents, and here they are today, ever grateful for the opportunity to live once again.


R. Vidyakumara, 42, who was diagnosed with severe coronary artery disease, said words could not describe the painful experience that he had to endure. But due to many good souls around him, his road to recovery during the treatments was made possible.


Married with four kids, the technician said he first experienced chest pain in 2017 and consulted a doctor in Seberang Jaya Hospital, before being confirmed to have the disease.


“After the consultation at the Seberang Jaya Hospital, I was advised to go to the Penang Hospital for the placement of coronary artery stent.


“All was good after that as I was going for regular checkups, but in late 2019, my condition worsened. I was brought back to the hospital and found to have four blockages in my heart.


“Due to my severe condition, I was advised by the government hospital to try out other hospitals for faster treatment.


“While my family and I were cracking our heads over where to go next, a friend of mine suggested to me to go to Penang Adventist Hospital. He said they have several funds dedicated to assist the needy diagnosed with selected medical conditions,” Vidyakumara told reporters at Penang Adventist Hospital today.


PAH then approved his admittance after receiving all the required documents to be able to benefit from one of the four funds in the hospital, the Patient Heart fund.


(From left) Tabitha, Heng, Vidyakumara and Loh engaged in a light moment


Vidyakumara had then applied for the angioplasty procedure, in which the hospital covered 100 percent of medical expenses from the said fund for RM50,000.


In less than a week, the entire process was completed, and he had gone through the angioplasty procedure in early 2020.


The other three PAH medical charity funds are the Dr J. Earl Gardner fund, Cancer fund and Welfare fund.


“After going through the medical procedure, I felt like a new man. I had this new kind of energy and nowadays, I exercise at least twice a week.


“I have a more balanced diet now because the doctors told me to eat moderately and watch out on snacking unhealthy foods.


“I am glad that I am able to return to work now. As the sole breadwinner with my youngest child at a tender age of five, I have a responsibility to put food on the table for my family.


“My huge amount of appreciation goes out to PAH for not only providing the best medical service but also for covering the entire medical expenses,” he added.


Another patient, Heng Seew Kim, 63, who is a cancer survivor, was evidently emotional while expressing her gratitude to PAH for giving her a second chance to live through the medical assistance they provided.


Heng was diagnosed with cervical cancer (stage one) in 2014 and had done the removal of the cervix while she was working in Johor in the same year.


“After getting my cervix removed, life was normal until 2019, when I experienced blood in my urine for the first time. The cancer had recurred.


“During that time, I was already here in Penang, so I decided to visit a private clinic first to get a consultation. Upon consultation, I was told that I had a tumor in my cervix.


(From left) Heng, Vidyakumara and Loh looking at the charity report by PAH


“The clinic referred me to a private hospital, but due to the limited facility to cater to my case there, a friend of mine recommended me to PAH,” Heng said.


Heng, who works as a restaurant waitress in Penang, underwent chemotherapy, radiotherapy and brachytherapy in 2020 under the Cancer fund.


A total of RM46,914 was disbursed from this fund to cover the treatments for her.


“I can never thank PAH enough for the assistance they have provided since day one. The medical staff here are also very nice and they are full of compassion, care and love for the patients.


“God bless all the good souls here, and to those of you who are suffering from any kind of chronic or medical situation, do consult PAH and they will be able to guide you through,” she added.


Also present during the interview were PAH charity manager Jenny Ooi, medical welfare officers Tabitha Andrews and Eric Loh.


Story by Kevin Vimal
Pix by Alissala Thian