‘Medicaid stored my lifestyles.’

Before she went under the knife for existence-saving surgical operation, Shan Copeland sat down with her nine-year-vintage son and mentioned the possibility that Mommy might not come home.

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“When I say I become scared, I was scared,” she stated. “The only factor I could consider turned into, ‘If something took place to me, what’s going to appear to my children?’ Nobody can love your youngsters such as you do.”

But she never could have been capable of having that existence-saving surgical treatment if she hadn’t had Medicaid.

A single mother of 3, Copeland, 28, has had more than one surgical procedures referring to Pseudotumor cerebral, a situation that causes fluid to accumulate in her mind. The circumstance can cause a multitude of problems, such as debilitating migraines and blindness.


In 2015, Copeland began having hassle specializing in her process in furnishings income. She exercised frequently and maintained a healthy weight loss program, but her reminiscence was beginning to wane.


“If a person got here and said something to me, I couldn’t take into account it,” she stated. “It genuinely began to get to me and I couldn’t do my process correctly.”

Without coverage, Copeland attempted to ride out the ache. Eventually, she went to 1 Jackson region hospital wherein she become advised she in all likelihood had a complicated migraine and changed into discharged.

The pain persisted, but, and she later went to St. Dominic’s Hospital in Jackson wherein she became admitted for 2 weeks while medical doctors ran a series of tests, along with a lumbar puncture.

She was recognized with Pseudotumor cerebral and sent domestic. However, Copeland stated the puncture hit a nerve, and he or she couldn’t stroll for a month because of the ache.

Copeland lowers back to her task with a physician’s excuse but became fired rapidly thereafter.

Unemployed, in regular ache, and with a handful of prescriptions, Copeland quickly fell in the back of on her bills.

Without coverage, Copeland changed into paying more than $500 a month in prescription costs. One remedy changed into $364 a month. Another price $sixty seven a month. Another become $122 a month.

“That’s money on pinnacle of money,” she stated. “Before I virtually were given the Medicaid, I become procuring my medications out of pocket. Just imagine, and then I don’t have a job? I needed to let the bills pass. I’m on the verge of really losing (my residence). I misplaced my automobile trying to pay payments that I genuinely couldn’t find the money for to pay for. That virtually placed a stress on me.”

Unable to work, Copeland stated there had been multiple instances in which she had to choose between shopping for her medications or providing for her kids.

“One 12 months it got here down to highschool clothes,” she said. “This (prescription) is $364. So what do I do? ‘Do I allow them to put on hand-me-downs, and I buy shoes and pay for the drugs? Do I now not pay for the drugs? It were given to some extent one time wherein I changed into like, ‘I understand I need my medicine, but my children need this.’ I had to pick and I’m the type of person, I’m going to pick out my kids.”

Copeland has boys and a lady. Jayden is nine years antique, Caleb is 7 and Kennedy is 5. Jayden can “shoot a shot from 1/2 court” at the same time as Caleb is her “miracle toddler.” Kennedy is “bright and bubbly.”

Copeland’s near buddy, Carbaryl King, stated he watched Copeland conflict to function each day.

“Sometimes it’d be brutal. She couldn’t stroll and she or he become in a lot pain,” he said. “I couldn’t imagine me going through that. If it turned into something I may want to have accomplished to save you that, I might have however it wasn’t in my electricity to do whatever about it. She’s sturdy. She’s been via loads.”

No count how she becomes feeling, King said Copeland’s top priority become taking care of her children.

“She’s a terrific mother, she tries to exit of her manner to ensure they’re well looked after,” he said.

Copeland’s children were impacted by the change they noticed of their mom. Jayden, a directly-A pupil, abruptly noticed his grades begin to slip.

Copeland said she tried to talk to her son approximately it however it made him too depressed. Because of the financial constraints, the younger circle of relatives had to move in with Copeland’s dad and mom. The pass was a tough adjustment.

“I’ve been on my own for years and now I’m 28 and have to flow returned in with my mother and father,” she stated.

For greater than years, Copeland struggled to discover remedy from the ache.

To drain the fluid in her mind, she underwent an optic nerve sheath fenestration, a system of reducing the membrane round her optic nerve in her left eye.

Copeland had several lumbar punctures, but docs stated she might want surgical treatment to accurate the problem, placing a lumbar-peritoneal shunt into her returned to drain the excess fluid.

Still uninsured, she said the medical institution required a down price of $2,100.

“They desired me to have a surgical procedure to simply store me but I couldn’t find the money for that $2,100 prematurely price,” she said.

With no other options, Copeland went to a member of the family to invite for assist. Through a friend of a pal, Copeland discovered about the Mississippi Health Advocacy Program in Jackson, which helped her get on Medicaid.

She had surgical treatment closing September. Medicaid blanketed the price. Copeland changed into discharged and despatched home and changed into positive approximately her restoration. Then, in October, she were given an infection. The pump changed into leaking fluid.

Her temperature shot to one zero five. She said she couldn’t devour, couldn’t circulate.

“It felt like my existence was slipping,” she stated.

Copeland required a 2nd emergency surgical treatment to do away with the implant. Medicaid blanketed that surgical operation as well.

“If it had now not been for Medicaid, when that first surgical treatment went incorrect and I were given the infection, I could have died,” she said. “Had I now not had Medicaid … I probably wouldn’t have made it, I possibly wouldn’t be here.”

The shunt became removed, and Copeland then had a peripherally inserted principal catheter, or PICC line, inserted. Medicaid paid for a nurse to return to Copeland’ s home to check at the PICC line as well as a nurse to stay along with her at home to keep her out of the hospital.

“I could be domestic with my kids and wouldn’t have to be inside the clinic for 8 weeks,” she stated. “That changed into all thanks to Medicaid.”

Roy Mitchell, executive director of Mississippi Health Advocacy Program, said Medicaid is beneficial for moms like Copeland.

“It is difficult to be a mom and cope with a critical fitness issue, when you are uninsured and worried about your fitness,” Mitchell said. “Medicaid lets in parents to meet their health wishes whilst persevering with to attend to their kids with out stressful about clinical financial ruin. When mother and father have health insurance, their children are more likely to be insured, too. It works each ways. And children are more healthy and do higher in school when they’re able to get checkups and health practitioner visits.”

In June, Copeland had a third surgery to replace the LP shunt. Without it, Copeland is certain she might “be blind or I’d be someplace lifeless.”

“Now I can manage to pay for the medication and not using a trouble, now I can visit the physician and I don’t must fear approximately ‘Are they going to approve this? Am I going with the intention to do that because I don’t have the money for it?’”

Copeland stated she knows there’s a terrible notion surrounding Medicaid but she believes it stored her existence.

“A lot of humans say their tax greenbacks are procuring folks that are lazy and don’t want to get up and work … however reflect onconsideration on the people who can’t rise up out of that mattress and go to paintings; you’re saving lives. It’s no longer all about human beings trying to be advantages queens and kings and stuff like that. Don’t have a look at it like that. Look at it as ‘I’m paying to assist someone save their life.’”

Copeland stated she’s pain-unfastened and now trying to the destiny. She hopes to move again in her home and open a teen center for young people inside the place.

“We’re within the healing manner and I’ve got high hopes,” she said. “I try to be optimistic and now not pessimistic about the situation. I don’t try to reflect consideration on the bad, simply think about shifting ahead.”

About author

Social media fan. Unapologetic food specialist. Introvert. Music enthusiast. Freelance bacon advocate. Devoted zombie scholar. Alcohol trailblazer. Organizer. Spent 2001-2004 merchandising ice cream in Mexico. My current pet project is getting to know walnuts for fun and profit. At the moment I'm writing about squirt guns in Salisbury, MD. Spent childhood donating toy planes in Suffolk, NY. Gifted in managing jack-in-the-boxes in Miami, FL. Spent high school summers supervising the production of foreign currency in Libya.
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