166 petitions

Update posted 1 day ago

Petition to Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield N.J.

Insurance refuses to pay for Life Saving Operation for Ovarian Cancer

  I am seeking any way I can to get the word out about insurance companies giving death sentences to women diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer. I have Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield N.J. health insurance. Three and a half years ago (October of 2014) I received a diagnosis of Stage 3 Ovarian Cancer. Ovarian cancer, according to the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, is usually diagnosed after menopause. However, some have been diagnosed as early as their 40’s or 50’s. This is not what you would label an “old person’s disease”. I began treatment with IV chemo, surgery (complete hysterectomy) followed by more IV chemo. By June of 2015 I was in remission.  I was in remission for two years. Two weeks before Christmas in 2017 I was told the cancer was growing. It had now spread to the liver, spleen and diaphragm. My doctors at Cancer Treatment Center of America, Chicago told me my best (and only option quite honestly) is a procedure called HIPEC Surgery. Without this procedure, the cancer will continue to spread. Our insurance pre-certification was submitted and surgery was scheduled for Tuesday, March 20, 2018. On Friday, March 16, after a day of pre-op testing, BCBSNJ notified the hospital the claim was being denied. This was an hour before everything shut down for the weekend. The reason? BCBSNJ is calling it experimental. This procedure was approved by the FDA in 1999. Two appeals have been filed and denied. As an alternative, my doctor wanted to perform surgery to remove the tumors (called debulking). Now we are being told this will not be approved because it was part of the original request for pre-certification. The part of this procedure they are labeling as experimental is a heated chemo placed in the abdominal cavity for two hours. How can they say no to a life-saving operation that has been performed for 20 years?! I have spoken to others who have had the same diagnosis, received the procedure and are living healthy lives today. So yes, there are insurance companies that do approve this. My husband and I are middle class people. He has worked for the same company for 38 years and always thought his insurance would be there when he needed it for either of us. We are currently trying to figure out a way to finance this procedure out of our pockets. BCBSNJ needs to update their coverage!  Please sign my petition and share it. Ovarian Cancer is a devastating disease, but there are procedures that can eradicate it. Insurance companies should be in business to help save lives – not condemn women to a death sentence because of outdated policies!  PLEASE SHARE ....... GET THE WORD OUT AGAINST THESE INSURANCE COMPANY'S.... Thank you!  My friend Joyce started a Fundraiser to help pay for the HIPEC part of the surgery that the insurance wont cover ($35,000). Here is the link. Any thing will help and thank you for sharing this and if you helped with the Fundraiser.        

Janine May
4,080 supporters
Started 2 days ago

Petition to Chris Murphy, George Jepsen, Katharine L. Wade, Timothy Curry

Approve Free Durable Medical Equipment for Patients Through Health Insurance

Hi!  My name is Lauren and I am 27 years old.  I was born with a congenital heart defect. I went into heart failure for the first time before I turned 3 years old and spent my 3rd birthday in the hospital recovering from open heart surgery where I received an artificial mitral valve.  At the time, I was put on a blood thinning medication called, "Coumadin" or "Warfarin (generic)".  Little did I know, I would need to be on this medication for the rest of my life.... Since then, I have had another open heart surgery to replace my artificial valve, went into heart failure, again, and even suffered a heart attack!  I have a St. Jude Mitral Valve which is made out of metal and cannot take any other blood thinner except for Coumadin/Warfarin.  Therefore, anti-coagulation therapy is required long term.  Everyday I live in fear of having another serious heart event happen to me and ultimately taking my life.Antiocoagulation Therapy Consists of:  Taking Coumadin/Warfarin Daily Getting Daily, Weekly, or Bi-Weekly blood draws Monitoring the amount of time it takes for my blood to clot (PT/INR) Constantly adjusting Coumadin/Warfarin dose to achieve optimal PT/INR range It is CRITICAL to constantly monitor someone's PT/INR range because there is an optimal and safe range that the patient must be in at all times.  So, Coumadin/Warfarin is constantly needing to be adjusted in order to tailor to the patient.  A PT/INR range that is above normal can cause someone to bleed excessively.  A PT/INR range below normal does not prevent the formation of blood clots which can lead to Pulmonary Embolism, Deep Vein Thrombosis, Heart Attack, and Stroke.  I have not been able to maintain or even obtain a safe PT/INR range for several years.  Because of this, my body forms blood clots on my artificial valve which either stay there, causing my valve to malfunction and not work at 100% (Cardiac Heart Failure), or the clots break off and travel to other parts of my body including blood vessels (Heart Attack).  All of this includes several regular follow ups with a cardiologist to monitor progress, or repeated admission and lengthy stays at the hospital, which essentially costs the insurance company AND the patient MORE money.  Regular doctor visits and hospital stays can also have a negative impact on an individual's employment status as they are constantly missing time to attend to their health needs.  Some may even lose their job.  Children that have to endure this risk missing valuable time at school and their parents miss time from work as well, which can have a massive impact on their financial and employment status.   ***There is a device that allows one to monitor their INR at home, by pricking their finger, drawing a VERY tiny sample of blood, and testing it on a special machine.  This technology allows someone to monitor their INR as frequently as their doctor recommends without having to go to a lab, medical office, or hospital which can incur copay's and fees.  It is also extremely convenient for individuals and children who have a fear of needles or difficulty with blood draws due to the size of their veins, etc. The machine typically costs $2,000.00-$3,000.00 and supplies (lancets and test strips) cost approximately $100.00+ monthly. My insurance company has denied my physician's request to obtain this machine.  They do not find it "Medically Necessary." Even if approved, they may not pay for the full cost leaving me to pay 50% or more out of pocket.  I have health insurance, but imagine what the cost would be for someone in this same situation who does not have health insurance. Or consider the financial hardship on families who have a child with a heart condition and still cannot afford this equipment for them after assistance from insurance. I am asking for your support with this petition for myself and other individuals in the same situation to make it possible to get the devices we need to maintain our health. I hope that you can see just how important this technology is and how detrimental insurance policies can be to someone's life.  Healthcare has made some strides over the years for example, diabetes supplies are now much more accessible and affordable to patients, and leave them with minimal to no out of pocket costs. So let's get this same policy adopted for patients that need anti-coagulation therapy! Please sign and share this petition so that we can move towards making a positive change and either make this type of durable medical equipment free to patients or of EXTREMELY little out of pocket cost!!! Thank you! xo

Lauren Tvardzik
124 supporters
Update posted 4 days ago

Petition to Francis Collins, Jenni Glenn Gingery, Sean Tipton, Mary Green, Dr. Anuja Dokras, Dr. Barbara Levy, Jeremy Lazarus, Kevin Griffis, Polly Webster, Yvonne Lau, Richard Ricciardi

Recognize #PCOS Polycystic Ovary Syndrome as a significant health concern demanding national attention and government support.

Often unrecognized PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) can cause many physical and emotional symptoms and for the up to 10% -20% of women and girls with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Worldwide, it is estimated less than half know what it is or that they have it. Many women with PCOS, have gone years without the proper diagnosis and have silently suffered not knowing what was truly wrong. Even in today’s medically advanced era, women from around the country are experiencing the same lack of response from a medical community with little understanding of PCOS, except in cases when the infertility aspect are addressed. As a result, single women, adolescents, LGBT, older women and those not trying to get pregnant have little chance of being diagnosed!!! PCOS can be a precursor to many life threatening conditions including type II diabetes, hypertension, cancer, cardiovascular disease, stroke and kidney problems if left undiagnosed or untreated. This means PCOS contributes to some of the leading causes of death and disability in women today. So why does all of this this matter? PCOS is the leading cause of female infertility in women of reproductive age PCOS is the most common endocrine disorder in women PCOS affects an estimated 14 milluon reproductive-age women in the U.S. Over 50% of PCOS patients are obese 50% of PCOS patients have diabetes by age 40 Approximately 34% of women with #PCOS have #depression and 45% have anxiety. PCOS patients are at higher risk to develop high blood pressure, lipid disorders and coronary artery disease As many as 40% of PCOS patients as young as age 30-45 may have coronary calcification (a warning of heart attack risk) To put this in to further perspective... PCOS affects about 14 million women in the USA. That's more than the number of people diagnosed with Breast Cancer, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis and Lupus combined!" - Louise Chang, MD Therefore, PCOS leaders, government officials, organizaions and advocates are charged with identifying strategies for achieving substantial improvement in the quality of health care and education for all patients living with the syndrome.  PCOS patients can not and should not simply be dismissed as a gynecological or infertility problem! With more than half of the women with PCOS predestined to have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes before the age of 40,  and increased risks for heart disease, stroke and endometrial cancer, finding ways to diagnose, screen and educate on the connection between thesee diseases to PCOS is imperative! Without the proper education and awareness of these connected disorders and the seriousness of PCOS as a metabolic endocrine disorder, these epidemics will continue to rise. The NIH needs to allocate more than 0.1% of funding to the approximately 30 million women affected in The United States and needs to engage and direct federal agencies to support more research, better physician education and better tools and resources for women and girls with the syndrome to live healthier lives with healthier outcomes!

Ashley Levinson
22,772 supporters