Double transplant is one step closer for Strome man

Back in December, Ernie Palmer talked to The Community Press about medical issues he is facing that will require him to undergo a double transplant surgery to replace his failing lungs and liver.

Palmer has now heard from doctors in Toronto, and has a teleconference scheduled for April 20, and will be flying out to Toronto May 14 for an evaluation by the transplant program there, from May 16 to 20.

Palmer’s doctors at the University Hospital in Edmonton told him that they felt his best chance would be in Toronto, where they have performed double transplants before.

To get him ready for surgery, doctors in Edmonton placed Palmer on a six week rehabilitation program that included cardio and strength training last December.

He saw great results over the six weeks, and has tried to keep up his training in the meantime
while waiting to hear from the Toronto transplant team.

“It’s hard though, it was great when the physiotherapist was pushing me, but I’ve been trying to keep up with my exercising,” Ernie says.

“I feel pretty good,” he adds, “the doctors say nothing has gotten worse, that I’m pretty stable at the moment, but if there’s a chance to be better, I want to take it.”

An organization called “Hope Air” will cover the cost of Palmer’s flight out, but the family will have to cover wife Donna’s travel costs.

Once in Toronto, the family will also cover the cost of accommodations and meals, Palmer says they did receive a list of hotels near the hospital who offered hospital discounts.

Palmer’s niece Theresa Schmutz started a GoFundMe page for Ernie, called “Ernie’s Double
Transplant Surgery,” which has thus far raised $17,825.

Palmer says that money will be a huge help towards covering the expenses.

Read more of this story in the March 22 edition of The Community Press – available on newsstands now and via E-Subscription!

To find Ernie’s GoFundMe page, go to:

A fund in his name has also been set up at the ATB Financial branch in Killam.

Leslie Cholowsky

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