07/05/2017 02:39 pm
United Way's Hudson Valley Region 2-1-1 received a call from a Dutchess County woman who is a breast cancer survivor. She'd been struggling over loss of income following her diagnosis and treatment and was unable to continue her career as a nurse because she was no longer able to work. She was also over income for DSS assistance.
When she called 2-1-1, she already had to shut off for electric and was facing eviction. As she spoke to 2-1-1, she said her 16-year-old son needs clothing. She worried that her health insurance would not cover breast reconstruction. Sometimes she said, even affording food is a struggle. She found that cancer organizations offered her help during treatment, but not after.
United Way's 2-1-1 gave her referrals for clothing for her son and to three food pantries that she was not aware of. They also referred her for utility and rent payment assistance. The 2-1-1 Specialist did research and followed-up with caller to make sure she was aware of the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998, that made it mandatory for all health insurance providers, including Medicare, to provide coverage for breast reconstruction after mastectomy.
The called rwas encouraged to contact the American Cancer Society and Support Connection for cancer counseling and to discuss her situation with a breast reconstruction surgeon. Also, suggested were breast cancer support groups.
Thanks to your support of United Way, 2-1-1 is there 24 hours, 365 days a year to provide help and hope to people like this caller.