Scouting For A Kidney

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Why I Need Financial Help

mom cropedI’m still shell shocked from my transplant interview and physical. It was not just the tests and procedures that need to be done before the transplant that stunned me, but the out of pockets costs! My husband and I have fair insurance now, but the hospital and Transplant Center are requiring up front deductibles, co-pays, and out of pocket costs before I even leave the hospital. I mean they require that I purchase a month of anti-rejection drugs before leaving the hospital at the tune of over $600 dollars in co-pays. They also require me to remain in Murray, Utah for some weeks after.

Food, hotels, and the like will come out of the family’s budget. We are making our monthly bills on my husband’s retirement, but there is little left over for additional needs. We are already trying to pay off $20,000 dollars of medical bills from when the Rail Road left me without insurance last year. None of us have had new clothes for years and my Social Security is still in appeal. Furthermore, with my husband’s health is in decline from heart failure, diabetes, and end-stage renal disease, he is looking at dialysis within weeks. His medical bills are mounting as well.

One of the problems we have acquired is that there are 30 or more differing agencies, doctors, labs, hospitals and clinics wanting their money now. If we pay $20 on each, each month, we possibly could make it and still eat cheep carbonates, but they all want all of their money now. “You only owe us $65 dollars in co-pay, we expect you to pay it off” … how can we pay everyone’s 65 dollars now, without going into debit on credit cards that are all ready maxed out? And the greater shares of the medical bills are yet to come.

Here is a list of my pre-transplant procedures and evaluation, most of which are already done, for which I will need to pay deductibles, co-pays, out of pocket costs, and other expenses: Eight vaccines and boosters, complete dental work, mammogram, colonoscopy, 22 Lab Tests, Echocardiogram, Myocardial Perfusion Scan, Renal Ultrasound, Renal CT, Renal MRI, Abdominal Ultrasound, CT of abdomen & Pelvis, Chest X-Ray, Bone Densitometry, magnetic resonance angiogram or MRA, Endoscopy, Pulmonary Function Test, Kidney List registry fee, Urinary bladder prolapsed repair surgery, and a Arteriovenous fistula surgery. Plus all my normal medication, special kidney diet and travel to all the tests and procedures. I will need about $6,500 dollars to pull out of our current outstanding medical debit.

Then come the costs of the actual Kidney transplant and one year’s Post care; hospital charges for the double nephrectomy and then four weeks later for actual Kidney Transplantation Procedure, surgeons, physicians, radiologists, and anesthesiologists fees for both, dialysis between both surgeries, Organ Procurement, recurrent lab testing, full costs of my kidney donor, blood, Immunosuppressants, other medications, rehabilitation, housing in Murray, meals, travel, and cell phone costs; the hospital estimates a total cost of $392,700 dollars. For my share, I will need another $7,000 dollars to pay for deductibles, co-pays, out of pocket costs and other expenses for the transplant portion of the procedure.

Together I need about $14,000 dollars in charitable gifts to add to Jerry’s retirement income and Obama Care, to make this transplant a reality. Living on the border between poor and middle class is hard; only $64 dollars a month keeps us off the Medicaid lists and that does not begin to cover our costs of this transplant.


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    Weston and Laura Hamaker
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