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N.B. family seeks community support for son’s rehab equipment

Click to play video: 'N.B. makes appeal for specialized rehabilitation equipment' N.B. makes appeal for specialized rehabilitation equipment
WATCH: A New Brunswick family is asking for help to get a specialized rehabilitation machine to help their son, who was severely injured in a car crash. Shelley Steeves reports. – Mar 8, 2021

A Cape Station, N.B., family is making a plea for help from the community in hopes of buying a specialized rehabilitation machine to help their son who was severely injured in a car crash.

Read more: Toronto children seeking rehab face long wait times amidst COVID-19 pandemic

In July 2019, Pamela Goose said her now 19-year-old, Josh Shier, was in a horrible car accident that caused severe brain damage and left him unable to move or speak.

“When he first came home he did not respond. he did not communicate basically he was just there”, she said.

Daryle Shier said it was suggested by some health-care workers that they put Josh in a home but the family refused. Instead, they brought him home and have been working with him daily performing exercises and stretches to help their son regain his mobility.

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“We just keep going with him every day and talking with him and telling him we are trying to help him,” he said.

Josh, he said, has come a long way. He is now able to speak a few words, eat on his own and peddle a small exerciser bike that sits on the floor in front of his wheelchair, said Shier. But in order to take their son’s rehad to the next level, Shier said they are trying to raise enough money to purchase a piece of equipment called a Quadriciser.

“It does over 19 different therapeutic moves,” he said.

Born with cerebral palsy himself, Shier said he is determined to help his son find that inner fight that he had to tap into as a boy.

“We used to talk about my disability and how hard I fought growing up so I think that helps him too,” he said.

He said his son is now able to move his own wheelchair a little on his own with the help of his hands and feet. But he continues to require ongoing rehab, for which they do not have insurance coverage.

“I can relate to a lot of his troubles with movement and stuff.”

Ability New Brunswick executive director Haley Flaro said the rehab unit is not covered by insurance nor by the province.

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“Social program won’t cover because it is not considered a basic need and it can run from a used machine at 10,000 to anywhere around $20 to $30,000,” said Flaro.

Shier says he will never give up on his son.

“We are going to keep praying to God and we are going to try our best to get some equipment to get him where he needs to be.”

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