Even though the ACC has been refusing her claim for nine months, she is still waiting for the life-changing procedure

She is in both emotional and physical anguish, and she retreats inside her apartment.

The last 19 years have been filled with turbulence, during which Brittany Kremers has been used to hearing the word “no” and having her hopes unfulfilled.

She hides her twisted jaw and teeth that are not aligned behind four walls as she waits for a change from a government organization that she says is preventing her from living a normal life. She is disfigured in a society that places a higher value on beauty.

Kremers ought to have had surgery at this point. It is only fair that she be liberated from the agony that bring her down. Instead, she continues to trickle water into her mouth from a syringe that is sixty milliliters in capacity. The act of eating is almost difficult. The liquid protein meals, which have established themselves as an unappetizing staple, are not a source of joyfulness.

It is not a method of living.

Alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma was the name of the severe kind of cancer that she was diagnosed with when she was eight years old. A year of chemotherapy and radiation treatment had been administered to Kremers, and he was declared cancer-free in October of 2007. However, only six months later, the physicians discovered that the tumor had returned with a fury.

In response to the fact that they were informed that there was nothing they could do other than make her comfortable with morphine, her mother Dawn engaged in combat.

Despite the fact that her daughter looked to be in good health, she refused to accept the fact that she was going to pass away. Eventually, she found a “amazing consultant” in Lower Hutt who was willing to remove the tumor.

The surgeons had removed a portion of the base of her skull as well as the whole of her jaw, which was then replaced with a flap of muscle tissue from her stomach.

After enduring years of surgery, Kremers eventually lost both her hearing and her sight on the right side of her body.

In addition to this, she was forced to endure an unsightly external metal distraction that was connected to her face. In order to stretch and move the face closer to the center of the face, she had to tighten the attachment with a screwdriver. Kremers, however, was under the impression that all would be worthwhile since, once the device was removed, she was informed that she would finally get a prosthetic jaw, which would bring about a significant transformation in her external appearance.

Kremers was overjoyed when she went to meet with the Canterbury District Health Board on December 2, 2021. She was anticipating that she would be informed of the day on which she would get her prosthesis, but instead, she was informed that there was no funds available to do the operation.

Due to the fact that a family friend had launched a Givealittle page, she was devastated and feared that she would never get the opportunity to have a normal face. However, Stuff published her article about the experience.

Donations began coming in at an astounding pace, which completely engulfed the family, who were unable to comprehend the outpouring of love and support that they had received.

However, despite the significant amount of $282,000 that was given by charitable New Zealanders and the hopeful plan to restore Kremers’ facial characteristics via the use of a prosthesis, a specialist from Auckland gave the devastating news. In light of the fact that she would need expensive follow-up care for the rest of her life, she would be required to seek assistance from the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC).

The funds that were collected would be sufficient to pay the first preparatory surgery as well as the major procedure; but, they would not be sufficient to support long-term care.

Thus, in May of 2022, she filed a claim for treatment injury to ACC and waited for a response.

Nine months passed until the claim was finally rejected by ACC. Dawn Kremers said that their decision was based on the fact that the deformity was caused by cancer and not by therapy.

Amanda Malu, who is the deputy chief executive for service delivery at ACC, said that the medical evidence in this particular instance determined that her injuries were either required to treat her recurring tumor or were a typical result of therapy for her disease.

Because Brittany’s injuries did not satisfy the requirements for a treatment injury, we were unable to accept her claim. As a result, we rejected her claim.

According to Malu, treatment injury claims are difficult to understand and will often take more time to resolve.

In light of the fact that we have just obtained fresh medical evidence about Brittany’s treatments, we have subsequently requested that two doctors, namely the first expert who provided us with advice and another specialist, evaluate her claim.

Malu, on the other hand, was unable to provide a specific date for when the ACC will make a decision.

In order to arrive at a conclusion about this claim as quickly as possible, we are exerting as much effort as we possibly can.

Despite the fact that Kremers’ consultant has resubmitted the claim, the opportunity to begin surgery on her face has been postponed as a result of this. This is because the physicians do not want to begin something that cannot be completed.

It also indicates that the anguish she had as a result of the metal distraction in order to shift portions of her face to the center has been squandered, as the parts have gone back to where they were before, which is causing a great deal of pain.

It is becoming more apparent to her that development is never going to take place.

The passing of her grandmother, who passed away suddenly in September of the previous year, has also been a source of emotional distress for her during the last year. Always Kremers’ greatest admirer, she was a tremendous support system for him whenever things became difficult.

She is now waiting for the ACC to reevaluate her claim, but she is beginning to lose hope since she is afraid that it may take another year for the ACC to evaluate her claim, just for it to be denied once again.

It is Dawn Kremers’s experience that she is seeing the decline in her daughter’s health.

“She is really unmotivated. It is almost time for the anniversary of my mother’s birthday, and we were planning to have lunch together, but I am certain that she will call and tell me that she is unable to make it.

The fact that her daughter is now back in Greymouth after spending some time in Christchurch is something that she is thankful for since it allows her to keep a close watch on her situation. On the other hand, Dawn Kremers is aware that she is unable to assist them until the ACC gives their claim the go light.

“To be let down for such a significant amount of time… She acknowledges that it causes her to feel furious. It is only a matter of waiting. “The mental health of Brittany is not in a good place at the moment.”