News

Nonprofit helps the under-insured get breast reconstructions

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Some individuals have difficulty paying for breast reconstructions, often because they fall between the high- and low-income brackets that guarantee coverage. This is one reason why a nonprofit in St. Louis is helping people get the surgeries they need, even if they can't afford them.

Called Gateway to Hope, the organization was founded by local doctors David Caplin and Marlys Schuh, after the former saw a patient's wife succumb to breast cancer, a disease which the patient could not afford to treat, according to the city's newspaper, the Post-Dispatch.

Caplin told the news provider that some people do not qualify for tumor removals or breast reconstructions, often because their income is too low to completely pay for a procedure but too high to qualify for federal or state healthcare programs.

To help fix this problem, he, Schuh and other medical professionals have been giving free care to women caught in the middle.

Since 2006, he told the news source, Gateway to Hope has helped dozens of women get the breast reconstructions they could not otherwise afford.

There are more than 50 million people in the U.S. who are uninsured, according to the Census Bureau.

Gregorian CB. Gateway to Hope steps up for the uninsured in breast cancer fight. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. June 2, 2011. http://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/health-med-fit/fitness/article_f492e8b0-fec1-5a27-97d2-cc4a74eabd2e.html Accessed June 3, 2011.

Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2009. Press release. U.S. Census Bureau. Sept 16, 2010. http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/income_wealth/cb10-144.htmlAccessed June 3, 2011.

Extract: Some individuals have difficulty paying for breast reconstructions, often because they fall between the high- and low-income brackets that guarantee coverage.

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