Overwhelmingly, the question has been "What can I (we) do to help?" We don't know for sure. What we do know is that this is a long journey that we are just starting. Long hospital stays, chemotherapy, bone marrow transplantion are all part of it. And, there will be many other things come up along the way that we simply have no idea about right now.
The only way to treat many forms of Leukemia is with a bone marrow or stem cell transplant. Multiple rounds of chemotherapy are needed around the transplant process. We will make a shift to MD Anderson in Houston for any therapy before, during, and after the stem cell transplant process.
Because we have been self-employed professional triathletes and coaches for the past 6 years, the question about insurance and financial matters comes up in virtually every conversation that we have had. We have insurance, and we are navigating this process now. There will, however, be expenses related to Amy's care that we will not be prepared for or that insurance will not cover. Monetary donations will help with this.
A separate account for Amy's medical expenses during this process has been set up. There are two ways to donate. An account through YouCaring has been established. This provides a convenient and clickable way to donate. Alternatively, if you would like to contribute via bank transfer, we can provide transfer instructions. If you would like more information and/or to make a direct payment from your bank account without any fees, you may contact Amy's bother, Andrew Cottrill by phone at 512.863.8795 or by email. If desired, donations can be made anonymously.
Blood transfusions and platelets are part of the process. Amy is registered at The Blood & Tissue Center of Central Texas. The exact process of donations, etc. is a bit confusing. But, you can donate at either their Lamar Blvd. location in Austin or in Round Rock. When we shift to MD Anderson in Houston for the stem cell transplant and follow up therapy, she will also be registered near there so that donations can be made. The Blood and Tissue Center of Central Texas also serves MD Anderson. If you do decide to donate, please let them know that it is for the benefit of Amy Marsh. They have 'coupons' that can be applied to Amy's blood transfusion expenses. Thus far in the process Amy has had 1 transfusion of platelets and 3 transfusions of red blood cells.
Amy will require a bone marrow/stem cell transplant for her AML. The process will likely start within the next month or so. The timeline for this is very much TBD and based on a number of considerations including finding a suitable bone marrow match and donor. You can register with Share America's Marrow to be considered for bone marrow donation for Amy or anyone else that may find you as a match. If you are between 18 and 44 years of age, please consider becoming a bone marrow donor. We are also having a 'Get Swabbed' party on Saturday January 24, 2015 at Austin Tri-Cyclist's Barton Springs location. Click here for details.
Please continue to check this space as we post updates through this journey.