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Disabled 21 Year Old Seeks Relief For Medical Expense Induced Debt

by Braden Gersper
(Geneva, Ohio, USA)

I am 21 years old and life has not been very good to me up to this point. I was recently diagnosed with diverticulitis and nearly died due to hospital error.

Because of the two hospitals that turned me away with my perforated intestine, I now have three hospital bills instead of one. I am now more than $200,000 in debt and I am having a very hard time paying for my medical expenses.

I now have a colostomy bag and it costs me more than $100 a month just for the supplies that I can't live without, and I do not have health insurance. Also, I frequently need to see my doctor and purchase my medications.

The reason this has been so hard is because while I was in the hospital fighting for my life, I lost both of my jobs and my home. This situation has not only been hard on me but my family as well.

My mother, and my brother who is in Iraq fighting for our country, have been helping me pay for all of these things. I thank God every single day for having a family that loves me as much as they do.

I have been desperately searching for a way to get out of debt and also try and pay my family back the thousands of dollars they have spent on my medical issues, even though they really can't afford it.

I recently wrote a children's book that has beautiful illustrations and is also very educational. But, I have no way to get my book published and it is very depressing.

Also, I would love to open a business, but again I just can't afford it.

I do not want to file a lawsuit against the hospitals because I understand that people make mistakes and I am just happy to be alive.

But this has been a very depressing experience and it is very hard to live a decent life when I am harassed every day by bill collectors and every penny I have goes to my medical expenses.

If anyone at all could please help me in any way, I would really appreciate it. I just really want to live a normal life again. Thank you very much for your time. Sincerely, Braden Gersper.

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Jan 10, 2010
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21 years old and disabled due to medical error?
by: Anonymous

First of all I do not know where you live. I understand you do not want to file a lawsuit. Darling, you are so young to be going through this for a medical error. This is coming from a nurse. Hospitals and doctors carry insurance. For the rest of your life will you have an ostomy?

The next question is how long ago did this happen? My father was butchered in a local hospital in New Orleans. At that time I had been a nurse for two years. Did I want to sue? Surely not; I was a nurse a very short period of time. However my father was 47 years old.

Several things should be happening for you. Number one is disability with back pay. Number two, the state will probably go back and settle your bills if you have not let too much time lapse. Number 3, and the most important thing for you to remember, is, quite frankly do you want someone else to get hurt due to hospital/doctor error/incompetence?

You cannot let that go my dear. These are things that occur that teaches both the hospital and doctors to be more careful. Remember a lawsuit does not correct the error, however it makes them be much more careful and prevents future patients from going through the same thing.

Secondly, the weekend of Hurricane George, a local hospital here in New Orleans literally did the same thing to my 89-year-old grandmother who went in with a fecal impaction. I will make a long story short. The RN put the nasogastric tube down and the LPN hooked her up to oxygen instead of suction. They blew an 8-inch hole in her small intestine.

The doctor demanded the nurse be fired and took the side of my mother, her sister and brother. Within a month the hospital admitted fault. My grandmother was an earth angel who loved unconditionally. No problems with her memory, just arthritis, osteo not rheumatoid. The surgeon tried to save her, she was dead the next day. It nearly killed all of us.

Did we allow them to get away with that? No honey, my mother and her sister and brother sued them. They also hit the physicians' fund. When you allow major medical mistakes to go without suit, you are allowing them to make them again. They must do teaching, and retraining and be on their toes at all times.

Lastly if your state will not give you Medicaid, then you must file bankruptcy. Search for a specialty attorney that handles medical malpractice. I am sorry darling, but this is how people in medicine learn from their mistakes. It keeps them on their toes, they retrain, and you potentially keep someone else from being hurt as you were. Go online.

Re "cannot afford meds," many pharmaceutical companies help people such as you. Find out the manufacturer of your medication. Get the address and toll-free number from your pharmacist and attempt to get them at a very reduced rate or free. Okay, God bless you, I wish you all the luck in the world, and I am so very sorry you're going through this horrific experience at this young age.

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