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Doctors didn’t want to ‘waste’ a heart on sick boy. Can We Say Death Panels?

December 2, 2013

Doctors didn’t want to ‘waste’ a heart on sick boy

Photo: Asadorian Mejia

Doctors at a top city hospital coldly refused to consider a 5-month-old for a heart transplant because he had a disease they believed would leave him with mental and physical disabilities, his parents have charged.

Mom Autumn Chenkus, told CNN on Saturday that specialists at New York Presbyterian claimed that Maverick — named after Tom Cruise’s character in the movie “Top Gun’’ — had only six months to live.

One doctor, they said, told them: “Take your baby home and love him for the time he has left.’’

Maverick was born with a heart defect and was later diagnosed with Coffin-Siris Syndrome, which is so rare that fewer than 100 cases have surfaced since it was identified in the 1970s.

On CNN, Chenkus accused the doctors of “discrimination,’’ saying they didn’t want to “waste’’ a heart on her son.

Meanwhile, the boy was languishing in the hospital, getting worse.

The desperate parents tried unsuccessfully to get him admitted to hospitals in Cleveland and Philadelphia.

Finally, he was accepted by Boston Children’s Hospital, which said it would consider him for a new heart.

But then, a miracle.

While there, he improved so much that doctors said he no longer needed a transplant and sent him home.

New York Presbyterian insists its doctors, nurses and psychiatrists evaluate heart transplants “with compassion.’’

CREDIT TO:  Michael Hechtman / New York Post

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