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Doctor on Board

Paediatrician Dr Laura Hyrapetian first visited Snehalaya in 2020 to see if she could help our work in any way. In our usual discussions preparing for a volunteer’s arrival, we were unsure exactly where she would be most useful so we agreed for her to come see where she could help most. The timing of her visit was extraordinary, while we are always busy with ART and regular health check-ups and treatment of our children, Laura’s visit just before the first lockdown, coincided with two very serious and challenging cases, definitely outside of our normal situation.

The first was one of our Rehab Center’s young girls with a fatal brain disorder. Laura, a neurology specialist, worked from early morning to late night every day alongside our staff, discussing the case with the attending doctors and nurses, and providing our team, who had raised the girl since she was a toddler, with vital psychological and professional support. At the same time another of our older girls was complaining of pain in her leg. Dr Laura correctly diagnosed this as osteosarcoma and was able to accelerate her treatment.

When she left after a few too short weeks she kept in constant contact, offering her advice and support from the UK where she works in one of London’s biggest hospitals. Despite the strain of working during the pandemic, she made sure she was available whenever we needed her. Not wanting to lose her valuable input we were thrilled when she accepted our invite to stay connected by joining Snehalaya UK as a Trustee.

Finally, in February, with the relaxing of COVID travel restrictions, Laura was able to return again for a few weeks. Again she amazed us with her energy and commitment to our children’s health. The girl she diagnosed with cancer is still very ill and again Laura was able to clearly advise on the treatment options available as well as accompany her for tests, scans and treatments.

Snehalaya needs more Laura’s, health professionals who can support our teams who support our children in navigating complex and serious health conditions.

If you, or someone you know, has specialised medical knowledge that our children could benefit from, please do get in touch,

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