Don’t wait until its too late. You WILL regret it when you lose your home AND your treatment options due to lack of options.
I had top notch health insurance, great life insurance a beautiful farm with 65 acres…I could go on and on of the financial assets my husband and I enjoyed prior to Lyme.
Its all gone now, but the pride had to go first. Once we began to ask for help was the turning point in our financial decline, although even now I have to go weeks without certain supplements that are very important to my recovery…
Yes, it was humiliating to go through bankruptcy, and I NEVER thought I would be receiving checks from the government to pay for groceries and utilities. But when I think of how few Lyme sufferers actually get Social Security Disability I feel like one of the lucky ones.
I have participated in, and heard of many other programs designed to help people receive financial help with the complex and severe financial realities that come along with the other horrors of this disease. Today, I received a link from fellow Lymie (also in Maine) Dolores Claesson about http://lyme.kaiserpapers.org/financial-assistance.html, written by Vickie Travis, the eldest daughter of Mr. Adam Arnold. In Ms. Travis’ words:
In September of the year 2000 my father, Adam Wesley Arnold was euthanized by Kaiser Permanente staff in Los Angeles, California.
My family and I witnessed the cruel acts that were committed against our father in the name of saving a corporate buck so
administration would have a few more pennies in their coffers.
We were devastated by the Kaiser attitude which was basically “Tough Toadies People”. I began studying the workings of Kaiser Permanente and discovered a group of wonderful, supportive professionals on a list serve operated through –
HARP – The Health Administration Responsibility Project,which is hosted by Dr. Harvey Frey, who is a physician, and an attorney. The function of HARP is self explanatory.
During this same time period I met Mr. Ronald Panzer, LPN, President of Hospice Patients Alliance. HPA promotes quality end of life care and has taken a stand against imposed killings in the medical setting. HPA provided to me information regarding the financial incentives of HMOs in general, Kaiser among them.
Both groups were extremely supportive of me and both groups shared enormous amounts of information regarding the financial incentives of Kaiser Permanente to deny care, avoid diagnosis and outright eliminate the patient in any way possible if they are going to be expensive to treat medically.
Dr. Charles Phillips, a former Kaiser Physician and who I believe is the foremost authority in this country on the inner, convoluted workings of Kaiser Permanente steered me in the right direction. He trained me to focus my anger and use it constructively and believe me after what I have seen and learned about Kaiser I have more than enough anger.
It was suggested by a Florida physician, that since I was receiving numerous letters of support from members of the public, who also were sharing their stories with me that I organize the data that I had already acquired. That way we would be providing documentation of what is taking place in the Kaiser Permanente environment.
Thus the Kaiser Papers were born from the most painful, eye opening experience I have ever had.
Thankfully the Kaiser Papers have grown into a significant people’s watchdog group with many member joining together to help – not only each other, and not just the community at large, but truly the entire country will benefit from the dedication of these volunteers who are committed to making a positive difference in the lives of suffering people.
Clearly they know the issues.
If you have any stories specifically related to Kaiser and Lyme disease, please contact Miguel below.
For more Lyme-specific information at the Kaiser Papers go to http://lyme.kaiserpapers.org/