Adding to the family’s woes, Chuang’s condition was not on the list of 197 rare diseases covered by the National Health Insurance, meaning that all her medical expenses, including hospitalization costs and plasma exchange fees, had to come out of Pan’s savings and her husband’s salary as a police officer.
“Thank God my daughter recuperated this year, otherwise we would have had to sell our house to pay for her treatment,” Pan said.
Pan said Chuang took a turn for the better in October last year, one month after taking medicine prescribed by a traditional Chinese medicine doctor, surnamed Li (黎).
“She gradually began to regain her vitality and could swipe her fingers very slowly across a touchscreen. It was not long before she could ‘like’ her friends’ Facebook posts using a tablet PC,” Pan said.
Once it was apparent that her condition was improving, Chuang was transferred to Taichung Hospital, where she underwent plasma exchange therapy once every three months and received routine injections of immunoglobulin to help boost her immune system, Pan said.
Pan said she was never completely sure that Chuang would be able to beat her illness until earlier this year, when for the first time in more than two years, her daughter was able to sit up in bed.
“At that moment, I told my daughter that even if the whole world were to give up on her, we would always be there for her,” Pan said, adding that God had given them hope when they had no one left to turn to.
“No one could have predicted the outcome of us spending all that money to try and save our daughter. However, we were sure of one thing: That we would regret it for the rest of our lives if we gave up on her without trying everything we could,” Pan said.