AN incredible $158,000 has been raised in three days so that a Donegal mother can begin specialist cancer treatment in America.
Vivienne Lynch-McDaid, from Buncrana, needs to undergo eight cycles of chemotherapy in Boston.
However, $150,000 (€127,000) has to be paid up front before her treatment can start at the world-famous Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).
But, that figure is an estimate and is expected to increase.
Friend, Victoria Naughton, launched a GoFundMe three days ago to aid with the costs. Incredibly, almost $160,000 has been raised by donors as of last night.
On Saturday, Victoria posted the following message on her Facebook page.
“People are so kind and generous. A million thanks to everyone who has already donated and shared; we have raised over $100k in less than two days,” she said.
“We need to get to $150k ASAP so that Vivienne can begin life saving chemotherapy treatment.”
At the beginning of the campaign, Victoria said that Vivienne wasn’t feeling well and went to her local hospital in Ireland where several tests revealed dreaded news.
Late last month, Vivienne arrived in Boston.
A friend, a cancer survivor, had access to elite doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Dana Farber Cancer Institute and helped secure a consultation appointment for Vivienne.
Travel in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions was difficult. However, another friend, with close ties to Washington DC, was able to expedite a medical visa and plane tickets were booked.
After her arrival in Boston, Vivienne was seen by Dr. Bruce Giantonio, a medical oncology specialist at MGH with 34 years of experience in the medical field.
Dr Giantonio gave Vivienne the news she wanted: There is hope.
Dr. Giantonio developed a treatment plan for Vivienne, whose daughter Chloe was an Irish boxing champion in 2016, winning the Girl 3 50kgs title.
However, Vivienne’s medical cover from Ireland does not cover the expenses, which have to be discharged before her treatment can start.
Victoria said: “This is understandable but puts Vivienne in a race not only for her health, but also for finances.
“I have no doubt that we can raise these funds. The Irish community is a tight-knit, strong and generous group. Those affected by cancer are the same. Let’s do this.”