Medicaid fails friend when needed most

info@islandpacket.comMay 20, 2013 

I'm outraged by our state Medicaid system. My friend has stage 4 breast cancer and is literally in the middle of breast surgery.

When diagnosed, she purchased COBRA insurance through her employer, and her family sacrificed to pay the expensive premium.

Recently, she was approved for Medicaid and Social Security disability, so she canceled her COBRA coverage. This should have been a happy ending to some of the financial struggles. However, without any notice, the state canceled her Medicaid. Upon inquiry, she was told there was an "oversight" with her disability income; now she's too rich. Once canceled, COBRA is no longer an option. Her disability is $1,465 a month and her chemo pill alone is $2,700 every three weeks. Wow, can the state do math?

Now what is she supposed to do? She had one breast removed and now has a spacer in place with fluid building up. She's also having difficulty breathing. She did everything right and through no fault of her own is left without health coverage when she needs it most.

The saddest part is that she adopted three children three years ago. These kids have already been through so much in their short lives and they deserve all she has left to give, but she just spent her third Mother's Day in bed crying. Can anyone out there help?

Sandra Thompson


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