Fundraising campaign for Limerick artist’s cancer treatment

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Pallasgreen artrist Diane Howe

A GoFundMe campaign has been set up for County Limerick artist Diane Howe to help with medical costs following a recent diagnosis of Small Cell Lung Cancer.

Diane’s husband John told the Limerick Post that funds raised will secure their home for the next nine to 10 months and will pay for the travel costs to and from hospital.

“Having had abdominal issues for the last year, my wife and I convinced our GP to send Diane for a CT scan on her abdomen. During this scan, the radiographer reported an ‘incidental finding’ that required a second scan on her thorax. Our doctor, having seen the results of the second scan referred her immediately for a bronchoscopy, the results of which, Diane was given on her birthday of all days,” he explained.

“Since then, it has been a whirlwind of tests and treatment including Diane’s first round of chemotherapy as an inpatient at our local hospital. Diane is now on her fourth day post chemo and it is obvious that she will not be able to do this alone. Part of the treatment is an injection of a drug called Neulasta, which promotes the production of white blood cells in bone marrow to counteract the toxic side effects of the chemo. This has left Diane in agony and requiring assistance.”

Diane is a 64-year-old mother of three and grandmother to three, who according to her husband, will go out of her way to help anyone in need.

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“Diane has spent a lot of her past working with conservation and animal rescue charities raising money and awareness through her artwork. Diane is a kind, loving and nurturing person that inspires similar qualities in the people that cross her path on this journey of life,” he said.

“We, as a couple are of very limited means as Diane injured her back 20 years ago and has been on disability ever since, and I am her part time carer as well as a caretaker for the property we live within. I essentially work a zero hours contract so if I do not work, I do not get paid. The hours I work cover the rent for our home. I also do not get holiday or sick leave.

“We are not the type of people that ask for help, we are usually the ones that people come to for help. To find ourselves in a position that requires so much medical intervention and may cause us to lose our home, is terrifying and in such a short period of time since the diagnosis 11 days ago.

“If we can reach our goal, it will mean we can secure our home for the next nine to ten months and will pay for the travel costs between home and the hospital when Diane has future rounds of chemo as a day patient. There are support packages available to help with travel costs but only if you reside outside a 50km range. We live 40km away from the hospital and therefore cannot avail of this service. This will increase our average mileage by a factor of eight every four weeks, putting extra strain on our already pressured finances,” he concluded.

To help visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/please-help-with-a-surprise-cancer-diagnosis.