HELP FOR HARVEY: Toowoomba parents Conor Swinton and Morgan Prior have been overwhelmed by the love and support given by the community after their baby Harvey was diagnosed with a lifelong condition.
HELP FOR HARVEY: Toowoomba parents Conor Swinton and Morgan Prior have been overwhelmed by the love and support given by the community after their baby Harvey was diagnosed with a lifelong condition. Sarah Gage Photography

Young mum overwhelmed after son's GoFundMe raises $5k

MORGAN Prior makes her infant son Harvey cry and scream at least twice a day, knowing that it will help save his life.

"Knowing that little pinprick is what keeps him healthy is worth (the screaming)," she said about her new baby, who turned two months old yesterday.

"It's quite a lot for a little baby."

Toowoomba baby Harvey Swinton was diagnosed with congenital hypopituitarism, which affects his growth and development.
Toowoomba baby Harvey Swinton was diagnosed with congenital hypopituitarism, which affects his growth and development. Morgan Prior

The 22-year-old Toowoomba woman gives him steroids, growth hormones and thyroid medication to compensate for Harvey's malfunctioning pituitary gland, a condition only picked up weeks ago after he turned yellow and stopped putting on weight.

Harvey also needs his heels pricked twice a day to monitor his blood sugar levels.

Despite the agonising routine, Ms Prior said she and her partner Conor Swinton have been overwhelmed by support from loved ones and strangers, who donated nearly $5000 as part of the GoFundMe campaign towards Harvey's care.

She said messages of kindness and love for her young family kept her sane while she sat in hospital for weeks.

"The support has been amazing. It shows, in times of need, how important a support network is," she said.

"We've had people cook meals, people help us with cleaning.

"It's also been strangers - people I've never met before.

"While I was sitting in Lady Cilento, those messages really kept me going."

Harvey's issues, which began at birth, really developed several weeks later when Ms Prior noticed he wasn't putting on weight.

"I started a mother's group, and it was at one point about four weeks when we lined all the babies up that I realised that he was really yellow, compared to when he was born, and much smaller," she said.

What started as a doctor's check-up became weeks of examinations, tests and hospital visits until specialists diagnosed him with congenital panhypopituitarism, a condition that could be deadly if not treated.

Ms Prior said the discovery of this was quite isolating for the couple.

"You feel really alone, because it's such a rare diagnosis," she said.

But she said the funds through the GoFundMe campaign, started by friend Maddie Prestridge last month, had offered relief to the single-income household.

To donate, head to www.gofundme.com/harvey039s-medical-expenses.



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