Since July 2007, we have had the honor of meeting many incredible women. Here, we share the stories of a few lives that have been touched by our services.
Marlene was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2008. Since Marlene did not speak English, the patient navigator at the hospital referred her to Curémonos. Our Community Health Worker accompanied Marlene to the initial doctor’s appointment where her diagnosis of breast cancer was confirmed. Marlene was overwhelmed with fear and thoughts of dying. Our Community Health Worker, a breast cancer survivor, provided emotional support as well as critical translation services. She also helped resolve a mistakenly charged total of $10,000 in doctor’s fees (due to miscommunication between the doctor’s office and the hospital’s Charity Care office). Marlene is doing well after completing her chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
Marina had an ultrasound in April of 2008. She was referred to a breast surgeon by her physician. Since Marina was unable to pay the $600 fee for treatment, she was referred to Curémonos. Our Community Health Worker negotiated a reduced fee and payment plan for the physician’s services. Additionally, she obtained funds from a local community foundation to cover part of the fee. Marina was only responsible for $300 and is now making affordable monthly payments to cover the outstanding balance.
Although Maria was 49 years old, she had never had a mammogram. She felt a lump in her left breast and was too afraid to seek medical assistance. Since Maria did not have insurance and was having financial difficulties, she did not know where to go for assistance. She was referred by one of her employers, who knew about Curémonos. Working seven days a week as a cleaning lady, she could not afford to take the day off. Furthermore, she was afraid of being diagnosed with breast cancer, and repeatedly said, “Tengo mucho miedo,” which means I am too afraid. Our Community Health Worker was able to convince Maria to have a mammogram; and made special arrangements so that she could have a late appointment in order for her not to miss a day of work. The Community Health Worker worked with healthcare professionals to obtain a free clinical breast cancer screening. Within 2 weeks of Maria’s referral, she obtained a free mammogram and sonogram. Fortunately, Maria’s lump was benign and she now has yearly check-ups.