Help for Friend

Updated on August 27, 2009
M.B. asks from Fort Worth, TX
9 answers

Hi Ladies - I am looking for suggestions to help a friend. Her child was recently diagnosed with leukemia. The family does not have health insurance. They do not qualify for medicaid. Our community has several fundraisers going right now. She is staying at the hospital with her child 24 hours. I'm looking for ideas to help her as well as raise money to assist them with anything they may need.

Also, has anyone had experience with no insurance in this type situation? Will it make a difference in the treatment he is given?

Thank you for any ideas you may have.


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answers from Dallas on

I second

It is such a good way for people to lend supportive comments and keep people up to date on prognosis and details without the parents and relatives constantly repeating everything.

As for helping, I think you are being very kind to offer support of any kind to her. I can't imagine going through something like this myself but I know I would appreciate someone to listen to me and just be there.

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answers from Dallas on

First off, prayers to the family! My husband is a leukemia survivor, so I know how difficult this is for them. When he was diagnosed, he was 17. Their church family helped with meals for the family, which really meant a lot to my husband and his parents. It helped out so much! Maybe one other thing you could think about is collecting gift cards from grocery stores to help with that. Also, if the mom is at the hospital 24/7, then maybe some kind of gift basket for her so that she can be as comfortable as possible. And one for her child as well...hospitals are no fun place to be. I think any little gesture will be greatly appreciated. I don't know how to help with the lack of insurance or any advice on that. But I will definitely keep this family in my prayers. And it's so wonderful that she has friends like you who are willing to help out however possible! You're doing such an amazing thing!



answers from Dallas on

I am so sorry and can't offer money, but would love to take her families pictures for free when her child feels well enough. Anything to bring any type of joy during this horrible time. Again, if you think of a fund raiser, let me know and I will publicize what I can.



answers from Amarillo on

1) there is a state program for chidlren with medical needs you do have to qulify, but it is more generous than typical medicaid
2)child should qualify for disability, again you have to qualify, but the guidlines are more generous
3)Arrange for snacks, hospital food is expensive! one of the best things anybody did for was to arrange a huge basket of various eat on the run food that did not require refridgeration- so I could keep in the room, plus these foods don't have strong smells
4) arrange for help with laundry, and friends to visit so the girl doesn't lose contact with friends.
5) arange for major house cleaning; we had to belach our walls and everything I'd never gotten it done without help
6) encourage people to look around if you see it needs do it; she is under to much stress to think about asking for help
7.)encourage people to shut up; spiritual platitudes and things like you are so strong are not going to help! She is libable to say something like why isn't gods will for child - seriously tell people to shut up keep conversation normal ie weather school other goings on she will talk if she wants to
8) caring bridge is awesome



answers from Tyler on

There are many resources for your friend to draw on. A relative of mine experienced this when her daughter was diagnosed with Euwing Sarcoma. They also had no insurance. Their church helped so much, but Carrie was in the Childrens' Hospital in Seattle for one year for chemo, radiation, and finally, surgery. She recovered and is now a healthy teenager. They were helped by a number of organizations and foundations available to children. The family did not have huge medical bills at the end of it.



answers from Dallas on

There are so may different routes she could go. St. Judes hospital takes kids, pays for transportation up and down from Tennessee when needed, pay for room, baord, food and treatment. Its far away but is the best place for treatment.

Another thing is she needs to contact the doctor who diagnosed her child and he should have a list of resources she can use.

Also, if she is at Childrens Hospital in Dallas, they have a wonder oncology department and have grants available for children with no insurance.

There is hope!!!! You can even call St.Judes yourself to start collectng information for her.

My love and prayers go out to her & her family.



answers from Dallas on

Hello M.,

You're a great friend. I pray that your friend's daughter gets well soon and that your friend have the strength, faith and rescilence needed.
during times of medical crisis many families may overlook making ontime payment which in turn can devastate their credit when they may needed most. maybe you can help your friend make a list to make sure all payments are sent on time. get her some stamps. you don't have to do her bills... but gentle coaching /reminder that even if they cannot send the whole payment, the trick is to send something....on time. you can tell her that she doesn't have to disclose to you any details (I don't know how close you are) bu that you are trying to keep her on track. I don't know where my head would be if I was in that situation.

definitely help around the house (inside and out) perhaps mowing their lawn.

Good luck to you and your friend's family. ~C.~



answers from Wichita Falls on

Contact the Leukemia/Lymphoma Society. LLS.ORG Also, there is an organization called Leukemia Texas. Both provide financial services. LLS also has counseling and other services. Wherever she is having chemo or radiation should have a social worker available to help them to help with getting other services. God bless.



answers from Dallas on

I will say a prayer for your friend and her family. They have a long battle ahead of them as well as huge medical bills. Is it possible that the family would qualify for an employee insurance plan?? maybe the dad had it available at work, but declined coverage because of the cost?? Could he possibly add the insurance now? Or maybe change jobs to an employer that has health coverage? (some group plans do cover pre existing conditions after a waiting period and these health issues could go on for a long time) Are they at Cook Children Hospital in Ft Worth? They need to visit with the social workers to see if the child could qualify for a CHIP program (children health insurance program) that has different guidelines than medicaid.

One other suggestion it is a free website that you can sign up for to keep friends and family informed about how the child is doing and needs of the family without having to repeat yourself a hundred times. that way people can stay in touch without intruding on the family.

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