At around 8 p.m. Nov. 1 near the 1500 block of Merchant Street, Yali Huang, an international student from South China Normal University studying education at Emporia State, was struck by a 2002 gray Jeep Liberty driven by Patricia Sutton, 72, of Americus. The 23-year-old student was transported by LifeTeam to Wesley Medical Center in Wichita.
Gonzalo Bruce, assistant vice president for International Education, said in an email that Huang is still in critical but stable condition at Wesley Medical Center.
“She has had ups and downs throughout the recovery process. At this point, I can tell you that her condition continues to be critical,” Bruce said. “Yali has made some progress (like breathing on her own) and doctors call her condition ‘stable.’” Bruce said. “At this point, Yali does not respond to commands, and there is no evidence she recognizes her relatives.”
Huang’s mother and cousin arrived in Wichita Nov. 14. They are provided lodging near Via Christi by the Ronald McDonald House, a charity that, according to their website, “provides a home-away-from-home” for families so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little or no cost.”
A Facebook group, “Yali Huang’s Recovery Blog,” was created to help track Huang’s progress. According to updates posted to the group, Huang has been recovering from an infection that occurred during surgery to place a tracheotomy tube and a feeding tube. The antibiotics have lowered the infection, and Huang has regained hand and eye movement, according to the group.
The group also said doctors are considering moving her to Via Christi Select Specialty Hospital in Wichita for long-term acute care. They are uncertain how long rehabilitation will take and said that her recovery is “one day at a time.”