For the past ten years, Oh Liang Che from Terengganu often went to a temple near his house to do volunteer work. He also participated in three short-term monastic retreats. However, after having oedema, shortness of breath and irregular heartbeats, he felt weak, preventing him from continuing to volunteer to help those in need.
Sixty-three years old’s Liang Che started suffering from oedema in his feet at the end of last year. Sometimes, he felt shortness of breath when walking, so he went to the hospital for an examination. The doctor diagnosed him with pulmonary oedema and a swollen heart but did not provide further treatment. He went home with some anti-swelling medication to recuperate. In March this year, his condition did not improve. He still felt very uncomfortable and even had difficulty going to the toilet. He decided to go to a private specialist hospital for further checks.
After a thorough examination, the doctor said he had arrhythmia, and the heart pumping function was only 17%. The doctor suggested he implant a cardiac resynchronisation defibrillator. Otherwise, he might have a risk of suffering a stroke.
“I went to another hospital for a check-up and did an echocardiogram. The doctor discovered that my heart was swollen and gave me the same suggestion: implanting a defibrillator. However, the equipment cost is higher.”
After learning about Liang Che’s family condition, his doctor in Terengganu referred him to a government hospital in Kuantan for surgery to reduce his medical expenses. However, he still must pay for the cardiac resynchronisation defibrillator, which costs RM83,000.
【His cardiovascular system is blocked many times, and his heart function gradually weakens】
Liang Che was involved in the timber wood business when he was young. He fainted twice when working in Johor Bahru and Gerik, Perak, respectively, when he was in his 40s. He was hospitalised, and several of his cardiovascular were obstructed between 70% and 90%. He underwent an angiogram in a hospital in Johor. Over the years, he went for regular follow-up visits. In 2017 and 2018, he suffered from frequent chest pain, and the doctor diagnosed him with severe cardiovascular obstruction, so he underwent bypass surgery.
“At that time, the doctor reminded me that the heart pumping function of an ordinary man is 45%, but my function was only left at 22%. Therefore, my heart will gradually fail.”
He followed the doctor’s advice to stop working, avoiding lifting heavy objects and other labour-intensive work. He often rested at home.
“Five years later, this still happens to me.”
In 2012, he came into contact with Theravada Buddhism by chance and participated in a short-term monastic retreat. After that, he realised that his views and thinking on life had changed, so he decided to continue practising the religion. With the support of his family, he often goes to the temple in his neighbourhood to do volunteer work.
“The doctor advised me to rest and recuperate, but I think I can continue volunteering to help those in need. I still want to join another short-term monastic retreat, but the spiritual practice also requires physical strength and a healthy body to care for myself.”
【His children cannot afford the total amount of the cardiac defibrillator, so they hope to receive assistance from the well-wishers】
After he stopped working due to illness, Liang Che received RM1,320 monthly from Socso. His 61-year-old wife, Ng Cheng Siew, is a housewife. The couple has two sons. Their 34-year-old eldest son works as a salesman, earning RM5,000 a month, while his 28-year-old youngest son has just started a hairdressing business with a monthly income of about RM4,000.
The family expenses are mainly borne by his sons, such as a monthly housing loan of RM1,250, a car loan of RM935, insurance premiums of about RM1,000, water and electricity bills of RM165, and the living expenses of the family of about RM2,500. For purchasing the cardiac resynchronisation defibrillator, the family could only raise RM20,000, and they still needed RM63,000.
As Liang Che and his family cannot afford the total amount of the defibrillator, One Hope Charity decided to lend a helping hand to them after reviewing the case following a home visit. One Hope Charity will assist in raising the remaining amount so that Liang Che can undergo surgery as soon as possible.
Liang Che and his family agreed to fully authorise One Hope Charity to take charge of the fundraising and collect donations from well-wishers on their behalf. Call One Hope Charity’s hotline at 04-539 9212, 016-419 2192 or 018-911 4192 if you have questions.