ATLANTA - The family of a little boy desperately in need of a kidney transplant remains hopeful the transplant will happen.
A.J. Burgess, 2, was born without kidneys and undergoes nightly dialysis to survive. His father is a match, but he's been on parole since last year on a charge of fleeing or eluding police. Emory University Hospital said it would go ahead with the transplant, but not until January when Anthony D. Dickerson, 26, can provide evidence he has complied with his parole.
Emory Healthcare officials and doctors met with the 2 year-old boy's parents Thursday and said they had an open and honest discussion.
The surgery won't happen for at least a month as doctor's wait for A.J. to clear pneumonia and an infection he developed while waiting for a transplant.
A potential surgery is expected to help fight these developments.
"We're anticipating a very important meeting to occur on Monday to get this process back on track. What we hope we are able to reestablish on Monday is trust," Davis said Thursday.
Davis said re-establishing trust is necessary before any decision is made on whether or not the University will allow the transplant to take place before January.
A.J.'s father didn't want to discuss concerns raised by the hospital, but Davis insists there should not be any stumbling blocks to providing A.J. a new kidney as soon as possible.
"I'm willing to do whatever it takes to give my son a kidney and I appreciate the community for supporting us," A.J.'s father said Friday.
Davis said it was community involvement by activists like Derrick Boazman, who led the charge into the university building, that made a huge impact on A.J.'s case.
Boazman said he and others won't rest until they are satisfied.
"We are as committed to making sure we are back in these streets, back in the streets picketing, protesting, doing whatever we need to do," said Boazman.
A.J.'s mother said he's improved since being admitted to the hospital over the weekend.
"He's better than he was when we came in a couple of days ago and I just want to say to the community thank you for your love and support we are overwhelmed and overjoyed," said Carmellia Burgess.
Late Thursday night Emory Healthcare released this statement:
“Emory Healthcare officials and physicians met with parents Carmellia Burgess, Anthony Dickerson, their attorneys and community supporters. The intent of the meeting was to open lines of communication among all parties involved and come together over how best to help AJ.
“We have had an open and honest discussion in focusing on our shared goal of ensuring the health and well-being of AJ and his father. In reviewing our communication with the family, Emory Healthcare wants to acknowledge and apologize for a breakdown in communication on our part. In addition, the Emory Healthcare team and the family agreed to meet again on Monday, Nov. 6, to continue the process. In our meeting this afternoon, we were able to review the situation and agree that moving forward on behalf of AJ is everyone’s most important goal.”