A young Malaysian man working in Singapore recently fell gravely ill and has been in and out of the intensive care unit since his hospital admission on April 1st.
Suffers from melioidosis
The 25-year-old, Kar Jun, came to Singapore about a year ago to work as a food stall assistant, supporting his family in their small village in Perak, Malaysia.
With an unemployed mother and a father working odd jobs in construction at retirement age, Kar Jun’s income was crucial for the family’s financial stability.
However, Kar Jun began experiencing fever and back pain, which quickly escalated to a critical condition in Mid March of this year.
He was admitted to Changi General Hospital (CGH) in Singapore, where he was diagnosed with severe melioidosis, a bacterial infection acquired through direct contact with contaminated soil and surface waters.
Despite having a history of high blood pressure, Kar Jun was otherwise healthy before his sudden illness.
The infection led to further complications, including diabetes ketoacidosis due to a family history of diabetes.
Kar Jun’s kidneys were severely affected, requiring dialysis every two days, and he was put on strong antibiotics and other medications.
While his medical insurance covered up to SGD 15,000, his medical bills had already reached SGD 40,000 (about RM 50,000) by April 13th.
Set up a fundraiser
Unable to afford the treatment, Kar Jun’s sister, Yenis Chai, turned to crowdfunding to help cover the mounting costs.
“My brother has always been a good boy to our family. He’s only 25 years old, supposedly has a good long way to go and be a filial son to our parents. We sincerely hope you could give him the chance to survive and heal from his medical condition,” she wrote in the fundraiser post.
The fundraiser quickly gained traction, surpassing its goal of SGD 30,000 (about RM 100,000) with the support of 462 donors.
In the meantime, Kar Jun was transferred to Hospital Sultanah Aminah (HSA) in Johor Bahru, where his condition initially improved before suffering a sudden cardiac arrest on April 15th.
Kar Jun’s family remains hopeful for his recovery as they continue to express their gratitude for the outpouring of support.
His sister shared with 8world News, “These few days, my mind has been blank. I just hope my brother gets better soon.”
The generosity of the donors has provided a lifeline for Kar Jun and his family as they face an uncertain future.