In Atlanta, a 15-year-old boy named Anthony Stokes has been given less than six months to live by doctors at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston due to an enlarged heart.

The teenager’s only hope at survival is getting his name on the transplant list. But doctors are refusing to put him on the list because of his … “history of noncompliance.”

“I know it’s wrong, because if they get to know him, they would love him,” Stokes’s mother Melencia Hamilton told WSBTV with tears streaming down her face.

“They said they don’t have any evidence that he would take his medicine or that he would go to his follow-ups.”

“They’ve given him a death sentence,” Christine Young Brown, president of the Newton Rockdale County SCLC, told WSBTV.

Strict guidelines exist for the national organ transplants list for both donor and recipient. According to its website, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta ranks number three among transplant programs in the United States. The hospital performed 12 pediatric heart transplants in 2012 alone.

Watch video above and let us know what you think.

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38 thoughts on “VIDEO: 15-Year-Old Anthony Stokes Denied Transplant Because He’s a Bad Kid

  1. Collean Wilson on said:

    The story says the young man has a history of “non-compliance”. Nowhere does it say he is a juvenial deliquent. Non-compliance means that he refuses to take his medicines and I can understand why the doctors are reluctant to give him this procedure. It would be a waste of time and effort if he is not willing to take the medicines that this procedure requires. His past of not willinging taking his medicines means that they will and should move on to a more suitable candidate.

  2. Oliver on said:

    Wildflower – Why are you saying “Shame on You” for a person comments? We all can agree to disagree. This young man (not a child / kid whatsoever) is not taking his meds and keeping doctor’s appointments… This will keep him healthy when receives the transplant. This goes for ANY and ALL TRANSPLANTS! If he was, then I am more than positive the mother would have mentioned that in her numerous interviews. When blood work is being done the doctors are checking to see if the medication is helping or not… This would clearly show if he is taking his meds… Also, I doubt that this family just found out about his heart condition. Even if he was on house arrest, then I am sure he could have still kept his doctor’s appointments and take his medication. If he is not doing those things, then the hospital was justified in not putting him on the transplant list. I am in the healthcare field and this is part of the criteria for any hospital before being placed on a transplant waiting list. Yes, I am sure he and his family are scared, but wouldn’t he / his family want to make sure doctors instructions are being followed… FYI – A transplant team is made up of more than just doctors… You have nurses, social workers, financial counselors and others… Another thing… Yes, the majority of people on the waiting list for a transplant are black. My question: Why aren’t more blacks being organ donors? I know I am an organ donor and currently in the process of being added to the NMDP list (National Marrow Donor Program).

    • Rachel2 BlackSons on said:

      Maybe he can’t afford the medication? I am sure it costs over $200. Maybe he could not make it to appointments – HE IS 15. Whatever petty crime he committed ( I say petty because he is NOT in jail), is not a reason for a doctor to decide to not put him on a list to live. I have severe asthma and I work 5 days a week, my insurance does not cover one of the medicines I need so that is $97 A MONTH the discounted cost) out of my pocket for a medicine to keep my lungs functioning. The actual cost of the medicine is $212 for a 30 day dose. Yes I do miss doses while I am living my life. For a doctor to tell me that I am no longer eligible for help because I may be late getting the prescription refilled because money is short is crazy.

      • Oliver on said:

        Can’t afford? Medicaid for he would clearly be approved for his medical condition. He being in trouble with the law is mute point. Bottom line: Why aren’t more blacks organ donors? Lets start that discussion.

      • Oliver on said:

        Again, a doctor does not make the decision of a patient being on a transplant list. It is a team… Doctors, nurses, social workers, financial counselors, etc. Even the family didnt have the money, the social workers / financial counselors would have helped in that manner… I am sad for the young man, but when will WE start taking responsiblity for our actions.

    • BlackBeauty on said:

      Thank you Oliver!

      We always screaming about racism and quick to play the race card, however we are among the lowest percentage of those who will even donate blood let alone an organ to help someone else to live.
      Again, the transplant process is not a joke. Those of us who have been there know this.
      This family is crying now, but where was this mother in making sure her son followed doctors orders? Thousands are waiting just like him who are doing the right thing to insure a successful transplant. They must follow the rules just like everyone else!
      Sorry, but It i hard to believe that these people did not know how serious this process is, and I know that the transplant team informed them many times of what was involved.

  3. Rachel2 BlackSons on said:

    Shame on those doctors and those that agree with them. He is a 15 year old CHILD, you are denying life because he got into some juvenile trouble. There have been people on death row that have gotten medical help to extend their chance at life – yet he is not good enough. If he were wealthy – the answer would change. Maybe GOD is testing us (society) to see if we value the life of HIS child. This is of no fault of his or anyone else – he got a bad organ. the value system we use is FLAWED. Were you PERFECT at 15?

    • Bet you would change your tune if you had a child who needed an organ and you were following each and every guideline put before you and your child, to ensure that he had a chance for a new life, but because of public pressure, the organ went to the child who, by his and his mother’s actions (even she acknowledges that he didn’t take his meds and did not show up for appointments) have shown a total disregard for the advice and guidelines the doctors set forth. Which is exactly what happened as he has now been added to the transplant list. I have a feeling we will be hearing about him again.

  4. Wildflower on said:

    Before you judge you all should at least have some idea of what you are talking about. I have read pretty much every article on the internet regarding this child because I did not want to think that race plays a role in this, however if you READ you’ll learn that this young man had been healthy up until 3 weeks of him going to the hospital for this issue where he and his family found out for the first time that he had a bad heart. Since finding this out the child and the mother have complied so for you all to make the heartless (no pun intended) about this family is just plain sad and it’s no wonder this race is in such disarray. Do your research. This child does not deserve what you are given him. This is what’s wrong with our children today. All we do is sit back and join in on the stereo typing of ourselves instead of standing up and supporting one another. What are you afraid of? It’s not racist to want to improve your community and expect to be treated equally people. You are just as much responsible for the condition that we are in as those that you are here destroying with your uninformed comments. If it was child or someone you love you’d be doing the same thing this mother is doing which is trying to fight for hers sons life. There is absolutely no evidence that this child will not comply with his medical instructions.

  5. Michelle on said:

    I think if he does what is needed then yes put him on the list. But his mother making excuses why he has a ankle monitor. Is crazy stop it he needs to know he has take responsibility for his action. This is not about race but responsibility. She as much to blame as him. So stop with crying & take responsibility for this whole mess. But I pray that God plans for his life is complete.

    • Wildflower on said:

      She wasn’t making an excuse. I heard a mom telling you and everyone else that is so “gun ho” to judge that remember he is a 15yr old boy. Fighting and being rambunctious is what 15 yr old males do and her son is already being treated as if this is an indication of him being a criminal when he’s a man. You know how they see young black men. Don’t front.

  6. Also, while a new heart is ideal, is his condition so bad that they can’t give him a pacemaker or artificial heart? The technology for both is getting better and better.

  7. Sorry, but this is not news, though I’m sure media outlets will try to make it that way for the cheap race angle and in the process hurt the public of perception of blacks far more than help. If his very life is on the line, and he and his mother can’t be bothered to follow the doctors instructions; then that is certainly not a good sign towards them following them when he’s out of the woods with a new heart (all though one’s health can be just as precarious with a newly transplanted organ).

  8. I didn’t want to comment at first because I know someone is going to say the comment is heartless. I hate this is happening to this child and his mom, but I agree with the majority of the comments. Why in the world have they not been in compliance with what the doctors have said for them to do. The hospital didn’t give him a death sentence. Either the mom did by not making sure that he followed instructions, or he was being disobedient and wouldn’t do what the mom said.

    • Wildflower on said:

      Then you should have went with your first instinct. If you are a mother then SHAME ON YOU!!! IF not still SHAME ON YOU. This could easily be one of your loved ones. And remember today the doctors are making this decision which is way out of their power and tomorrow it will be one they may affect you!

      • I’ve been in that position, so I understand. The rules are the rules. Get out of your emotions.

      • If it were one of her loved ones, she probably would have made sure they were in compliance. Btw. No shame in telling the truth.

  9. SayWhat on said:

    I agree with the doctors. Why give the organ to someone who will not appreciate its value. If he’s not willing to follow the guidelines then I don’t blame them for wanting the organ to go to someone else.

    • BlackBeauty on said:

      Not only that but after the transplant there are procedures and meds one must take and follow in order for the new hear/organt not to reject.
      This is a serious procedure. Thousands are waiting for transplants so they can live.
      Where was this mother that she did not see that her 15 year old son did what he was supposed to do, and also educate him on the importance of what was happening and the second chance at life he may be given? Now she is yelling foul!!!

      • Wildflower on said:

        Shame on YOU!! It’s nothing beautiful about you. If you’re not gonna support your people in a positive way then just stop harming them with your ignorance.

  10. BlackBeauty on said:

    We always have to play the race card!

    There are reasons some are rejected. Mainly because they are not keeping in what the program tells them to do. Some folks always say it is because someone is black or whatever.
    Hearts, kidneys are very precious. Thousands are waiting all over the world for transplant who follow the rules of the trasnplant team beacuse they know that their lives depend on it. If you have not taken the medication like you should, or followed the exact conditions of receiving a transplant you should not be a candidate.
    Black kids and adults receive trasnplants all the time.
    Stop with the race card all the time. Think first.

      • BlackBeauty on said:

        If that is the case then why have all the black kids and adults received kidneys and hearts and other parts transplanted?? They were not rejected because they were black.
        Transplantation is a process. This is not a joke, nor should it be taken lightly. The team prepares you for transplant so that you will have a successful transplant and the organ will not be rejected. It is not a quick process. It sometimes takes months to get a person ready for transplantation.
        I know of a black man who was high on the lung transplant list, but was rejected because he would not stop drinking and smoking. A transplant would do nothing for him so why waste a good lung. Unfortunately he passed away 12 weeks later.
        Just saying not everything is about race! Sometimes black folks react out of emotion, and not clear thought.

      • Oh yes it would–well, unless maybe that kid’s parents had a wing of the hospital named after them. I’ve known a guy who lost his position on a list for a liver because he smoked a single cigarette–he swore it was only the once–but a nurse caught him and off he went.

    • When I first read this story, the reasons given for the hospital’s decision was the total disregard this child and his mother had for the time, expertise and instructions given by the doctors. Not taking his meds, skipping appointments and in general, just not taking basic care of himself. An organ as scarce as a heart that is in such high demand should at least be given to someone at very least is willing to try to appreciate it. This mom evidently has no control over whether or not her son follows the rules and he is not willing to take care of himself. That is what drove the decision. Race should never have been introduced to the discussion.

      • Wildflower on said:

        Read more articles and you’d be better informed because what you think you know now isn’t what they actually say it is. Shame on you for making uninformed and hurtful comments that you have made.

      • I’m commenting on the two articles before me. Something tells me that there is a reason why you either cannot or will not acknowledge the facts of this story. I hope whatever it is, the outcome is favorable for you, because there is none so blind as those who will not see. Good luck.

    • Wildflower on said:

      Do your research before you bash your own race for attempting to stand up for themselves and give the white race back there theme song, “playing the race card”. Blacks make up the largest number of those on the list for transplants but receive on 14% of those compared to whites who are at 27%.

      • Michelle on said:

        So if the kid was white & going this same thing would this be a big deal. No it wouldn’t because everyone would say it what he gets because he’s a bad kid. So with that begin said. Remember people need to take responsibility for their action. I hope you have a bless day. Because you didn’t here what Tom & them said this morning. So with that I’m out of this mess have get back to school work.

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