Causing Controversy: A GA Teen is Denied a Heart Transplant - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

Causing Controversy: A GA Teen is Denied a Heart Transplant

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A 15-year-old boy in Georgia is in desperate need of a heart transplant,  but doctors say he doesn't qualify for the transplant list.

Tony Thomas explains how the teen's family is waging a battle trying to get him on the list before it's too late.

Without a new heart doctors have given the 15-year-old only six months to live, but those same doctors have apparently told the family he won't be put on the transplant list.

As he waits his family is fighting back.

"I want doctors to give me an opportunity.."

Those are the word from Anthony Stokes as he was videotaped Sunday night in his hospital room.

For the past month he's been in the children's hospital with an enlarged heart.

The only remedy a heart transplant, but it appears that life-saving procedure will never come.

"I know it's wrong, because if they get to know him, they will love him."

According to this letter the family gave us, doctors have decided the 15-year-old does not qualify to be put on the heart transplant list because of his history of quote-"non compliance".

They say they don't have any evidence showing that he would take his medicine, and he wouldn't have any follow-up care.

Doctors weren't specific in the letter, but family members say they've been told it's due to stokes' history of bad grades and run-ins with the law.

Supporters and activists, like the president of the Newton-Rockdale County SCLC are pushing back--demanding doctors take a second look. 

"They've given him a death sentence."

Children's healthcare of Atlanta released this statement when we asked about the case ." the well-being of our patients is always our first priority.  We are continuing to work with this family and looking at all options regarding this patient's health care. We follow very specific criteria in determining eligibility for a transplant of any kind."

"They just don't want to give him a chance."

Friends and family continue to push to try to get doctors to change their mind, but it's unclear if they have any shot at success.  The criteria for the national transplant list is very strict and the list of names on it very long.

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