ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Clinton Grams' 10-year-old son Alex has been battling leukemia at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital for more than a year. He and his wife Mindy have spent the last few months battling a visitation rule put in place because of COVID-19.
“It’s been very hard,” Clinton said. “My son doesn’t understand.”
Alex has been undergoing treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukemia for more than a year, with his parents at his bedside.
Clinton says that all changed back in March.
“At one point, anyone could come up and visit my son or us,” he said. “But then one day, me and my wife went out for lunch, and when we came back, we were stopped by security, and said, they were only allowing one person up.”
He says it’s been that way ever since that day.
All Children’s sent FOX 13 their visitation policy, which reads in part, “We are limiting visitors in the inpatient, outpatient and emergency center settings. Patients are allowed one visitor on campus at a time.”
“What they’re doing is wrong,” Clinton said. “Both parents should be up there.”
In a statement to FOX 13, the hospital wrote, “The well-being of our patients is of utmost priority and our visitor policies are imperative in supporting this. To maintain the health and safety of our patients, all visitors to pediatric inpatient facilities outside the policy guidelines must be approved by Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital chief medical officer and associate chief nursing officer.”
Clinton says, in the last week, doctors told him Alex’s leukemia is now terminal.
For one night last week, Clinton and Mindy were able to see their son together. But the next day, they could not.
Seeing the difference in Alex’s spirit, Clinton is hoping the hospital would reconsider their policy for families like theirs.
“[It makes] all the difference to my son, is that we’re there, and we’re together,” he added. “With everyone there, there’s a fighting chance. But without everyone, his family, his hope is shattered.”
The family is posting updates about Alex on its GoFundMe page.