LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. (WXIA) - A life-changing surgery for a two-year-old Georgia boy is on hold, even though his family has a matching donor ready to give.
A.J. Dickerson was born without kidneys and needs constant care. His father, Anthony, tested as a perfect match and was ready to donate a kidney to his son, but the boy's mother says the hospital stopped the plan.
"Two steps closer to giving him a kidney and we got shut down, basically," said Carmella Burgess.
The problems surfaced when Dickerson was arrested on a probation violation and charged with possession of a firearm. But his incarceration was initially not an issue for the hospital that would perform the surgery to give his son the kidney he needs.
Dickerson says Emory Hospital wrote a letter to the Gwinnett County Jail where he was being held, saying the surgery could continue if he were able to be transported to an appointment in late September.
But once he was released, Dickerson says the hospital's tone changed, now asking for proof that he was complying with his parole officer for the next three months. The hospital said Dickerson would be re-evaluated in January.
"What do he got to do with the mistakes I made? Nothing," Dickerson told WXIA-TV.
"Dad making a mistake shouldn't affect what he wants to do with our son," Burgess said. "He's only two. He don't deserve this. We've been waiting so long for this."
A.J. suffered a stroke two months ago and even though he needs many doctor's visits and has a donor ready, they're now forced to wait.
The child's parents now say their only option is to get onto the wait list for a kidney transplant, but that could take a long time.