The potential donor said, ‘They’re taking my kidney hostage and she’s going to die because they won’t give it to her.
A Colorado woman with stage 5 kidney failure went on “The Ingraham Angle” Thursday to talk about being denied a kidney transplant because of her and her potential donor’s vaccination status.
Leilani Lutali said, “I believe my days are numbered as I continue to drop my GFR numbers.” GFR, or glomerular filtration rate, measures how well the kidneys are working at filtering toxins and waste from the blood. A number of 60 or more is considered normal. The GFR number is below 15 in stage 5, where the kidneys almost or completely stop working.
In September, the Colorado health system, UCHealth, refused the transplant due to the fact that it had not received a vaccine, Lutali said.
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“I went to the hospital to decide if dialysis was an option. He said at this point [vaccine] Wouldn’t need the shot, but told me I was irresponsible for not getting it,” she said.
Lutali’s donor Jamie Fougner expressed displeasure at the hospital’s decision. She had previously said, “How can I sit here and allow them to kill my friend when my kidney is perfectly fine and I can save his life?”
The two had met at a Bible study less than a year ago.
“I want to start crying,” host Laura Ingraham said of seeing the two friends together. “It’s the most selfless thing, it’s unbelievable,” Ingraham said of Fogner’s desire to donate his kidney.
Faugner said she was “stunned at the lack of compassion and consideration” in allowing Lutali to be the driver in her care. “They’re taking my kidney hostage and she’s going to die because they won’t give it to her,” she said.
Ingraham asked if there was any justification or science behind the hospital’s decision.
Leilani said he proposed a number of measures, including signing a medical waiver for not taking the vaccine.
Ingraham concluded that it sounded like “an outstanding case of discrimination”.
“I don’t know if people in Colorado are smoking too much pot or what’s going on,” Ingraham said.
The health system issued a statement that said, “For transplant patients who contract COVID-19, the mortality rate is approximately 20% to more than 30%. This shows the extreme risk that COVID-19 may result from their surgery.” Presents the latter to transplant recipients.”