Meet Hannah-Vanyssa: 2022 Family Advocacy Day Champion

Hannah-Vanyssa is participating in Speak Now for Kids Family Advocacy Day from June 12-14. Through this event, Hannah-Vanyssa and her family will discuss her health journey, Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital’s role in providing her with necessary health care services, and why the public and our elected officials must invest in the future of patients like Hannah-Vanyssa.

Hannah-Vanyssa was born with Tetralogy of Fallot, a complex birth defect of the heart.

After her diagnosis, the family moved from Long Island to Maryland to be closer to extended family, but also to find a specialist and get a second option for their daughter. Unfortunately, they could not get Hannah-Vanyssa into the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, but a medical emergency landed them at University of Maryland Medical System. Hannah-Vanyssa was admitted, evaluated for care, and received multiple treatments for the blockage and hole in her heart.

“Initially, we were told that Hannah-Vanyssa would never function as a normal, active child,” says Carlan, Hannah-Vanyssa’s mother. “We were told that if she lived, she would not be able to eat, walk or talk.”

Hannah-Vanyssa is now a very active 10-year-old. She’s very bright and loves to learn. She has some developmental delays but receives individualized education and is learning to read.

“Thank goodness for her surgeries at University of Maryland Medical System and the exceptional care she receives from her specialists at Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital,” says Carlan. “Hannah-Vanyssa is an absolute miracle. She now walks, eats and talks on her own. While, not fully verbal, she is making great progress. She has opinions and is not afraid to share them.”

Hannah-Vanyssa enjoys dancing, crafts and coloring and playing dress up.

“She is living her best life,” says Carlan.

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published this page in Blog 2022-06-07 08:36:35 -0400