Letters Sent

A week ago I told everyone about Christina Montada and her fight for life. Today I thought I’d post a copy of the letter I sent to: the Ontario Health Minister (Deborah Matthews), the Ontario Premier (Dalton McGuinty), Parliamentary Assistant to the health Minister (Liz Sandals) and the Halton MPP (Ted Chudleigh) on her behalf. I decided to send letters and e-mails to all of them because each one can make a difference in their own way and I chose Liz Sandals because she just happens to be the MPP for Guelph and someone I met through hosting the Purina Walk For Dog Guides before moving to Northern Ontario.

Here’s a picture from our 2009 walk. If I’m not incorrect Guelph city Counselor, Gloria Kovak, is standing to my left and Liz Sandals beside her.

If you’d like to help Christina, don’t hesitate to leave a comment with your contact information and I’ll make sure not to post any personal information since comments here are moderated.

Dear (Name of Person)
My name is Brooke Sillaby and I am writing to ask for your assistance in helping my friend’s daughter, Christina Montada, receive the lifesaving device called the Vegas nerve Stimulator.

I have known Christina’s mother, Monique Lee-Montada for just over two years and have come to love her daughter as if she were my own. I came to know Christina through my work with an organization called Autism dog Services and even though I no longer raise puppies, I continue to keep in touch with her family. Christina is only nine years old, but has overcome more challenges and health scares than any adult I know.

From a young age, Christina has had an ongoing struggle to live. Around the age of seven months she was given a gastro tube for nutrition because she was not meeting the appropriate developmental milestones. Due to the long period of time without sufficient nutrition, Christina has been left with delays in all areas of development. She is not independently mobile and does not have any formal method of communication, so finds it frustrating to get her needs across. In addition to all of this Christina was recently diagnosed with Cardio-Facio-Cutaneous Syndrome and Tonic/Clonic Epilepsy.

CFC has been a tough diagnosis to accept, but christina’s family is finding it even harder to deal with watching their little angel struggle to survive the numerous seizures that are taking a toll on her little body. Christina has tried several different medications, and is currently on a Ketogenic Diet, in an effort to provide some relief, but nothing seems to work. Recently, her family was informed of a lifesaving alternative, the Vagus Nerve Stimulator, but their excitement was short lived because they were told Toronto’s Sick Children’s Hospital is only able to perform 8-10 procedures a year. This is not because they do not want to do more, but because OHIP does not cover the units and the money must be taken out of the Hospital’s own surgery budget.

I do not understand why such a device would not be covered when approval for something as trivial as a new computer for someone with a disability (like me) is given with just the okay of a “certified” assessment person. I am not saying my assistive devices are not important for me to live comfortably, but the Vegas nerve Stimulator is often the last alternative children like Christina have for any sort of life at all.

I hope you will read this letter, along with letters from others whose lives have been touched by Christina Montada and take it upon yourself to make sure she receives the device that will save her little life.


Brooke Sillaby

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