Little Wayan Gets a Lift from AirAsia’s Flying Philanthropists

KUALA LUMPUR

A little boy from Denpasar has just had corrective heart surgery in Malaysia courtesy of AirAsia’s “donate your loose change” programme for pas-sengers on its flights.

I Wayan Arya Sila Arsadhana, 4, who had his heart correction surgery at the National Heart Institute in Kuala Lumpur recently, is the latest beneficiary of the programme, which started in 2008.

Happy father I Wayan Mudiarta said this week: “I’d like to thank AirAsia for helping my child gain a normal life. His condition is very much improved after the surgery. I wish AirAsia all the best, and I praise the airline’s noble effort in providing assistance and care to people in need.” 

The airline also provided free flights from Bali to Kuala Lumpur for the child and his parents. The little boy was referred to the institute with severe cyanosis, a debilitating and life-shortening condition that causes bluish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes.

Cyanosis is caused by a lack of oxygen in the blood. It is seen in infants at birth as a result of heart defects, respiratory distress syndrome, or lung and breathing problems.

Heart surgeon Sivakumar Sivalingam said this week his little patient is responding very well to the treatment and had shown tremendous progress. A thorough check-up was performed including an echocardiogram, which did not show any further problems with the child’s heart.

The boy is now expected to enjoy healthy and growth post-surgery as the heart defect which affected his development has been successfully corrected.

AirAsia has an active community-service programme of which the heart surgery scheme is a part. The airline played key roles in providing assistance in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami, the 2005 Bali bombings, Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar and the Sichuan earthquake in China in 2008, and the Sumatra earthquake last year.

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