Aspiring Pastor and Family Man Seeks Help to Undergo Major Spinal Surgery
By: Suzell Wray
Mandeville, Jamaica- The intervention of the novel coronavirus has impacted the financial competence of tertiary level students across the island. However, for aspiring student pastor and devoted family man, Marvin Pryce, problems have now exceeded that reality.
Pryce, who is the sole breadwinner of his household of three, was diagnosed in November with a rare spinal condition that has left him partially immobile and in need of urgent surgery. After undergoing an MRI scan, he was informed by doctors that two discs located in his spine are herniated.
A herniation occurs when an organ pushes through an opening in the muscle or tissue that holds it in place.
The fourth-year student who is enrolled in the Northern Caribbean University’s (NCU) School of Religion and Theology, attended his last class on November 6, after the condition rendered him unable to sit up due to excruciating pain.
The 34-year-old told the Hilltop Trumpet that he has been experiencing pain in the area from 2018, however, he found that it got worse in recent months.
At least one neurosurgeon has attributed his condition to hard work done over the years.
“I’ve been doing construction work for the past several years before coming to NCU but recently I’ve been mostly doing landscaping… so even when I fell ill, I was cutting down about a half-acre of land with a machete. So, I was told that could’ve also been an initiating factor to the illness.”
He shared that he was informed by doctors that he will have to undergo a spinal disc repair surgery to remedy the issue, however, he said he was told by the Kingston Public Hospital that there was a long waiting list.
A list long enough to postpone his surgery until next year.
The Business Minor explained that he was informed by medical professionals that it would cost approximately JMD 5,000,000 to undergo the surgery and would include the cost to purchase synthetic discs for the operation which could range from $600,000 to JMD 800,000.
The former student leader shared that he was later advised that it would be best to undergo the surgery at the Comercializadora de Servicios Médicos Cubanos, based in Cuba.
According to a document received by the medical institution and shared with our news team, it would cost USD 7,747.50 to undergo the surgery in the neighbouring island. He noted, however, that it would cost USD 18,000 in total to accommodate himself and his wife, Kadiann Pryce for the period.
Meeting the Goal
The father of two has since organized a GoFundMe with the help of friends to accumulate the funds needed, which to date has reached a goal of only USD 1,735. When asked how he and his family have been coping, he shared that he is surrounded by good people who have assisted him.
“I have some really good people in my corner because I’m not out of food but not being able to work and not being able to study is hard and as a result, I’ll have to sit out this Spring Semester.”
He noted that he still has assignments completing from the Fall 2020 semester, following the abrupt disruption of his studies. He shared that some lecturers have been lenient, however, he will have to petition one of his courses, which means sitting the exam at a later date.
Pryce, who is a currently a member of the Northern Caribbean University Church and a proud Seventh-day Adventist for over 13- years, shared that he knows he will recover from this obstacle.
“I believe that God can heal me, but I also believe that God sent doctors and physicians to help and assist the ailing.”
Pryce, who is now set to graduate in December 2022, served as the President of NCU’s Student Association of Literature Evangelists Club 2018-2019 and also the Parish Co-Ordinator and Treasurer of the university’s Central Jamaica Conference Club (CJCC) 2017-2018.
Pryce is urging those who can donate toward his surgical operation to do so by utilizing the GoFundMe option provided or by donating directly to his account at Scotia (Mandeville Branch) AC#657019 or the National Commercial Bank (May Pen Branch) AC#564385190.