I blogged about this in the blog post A Little Girl Needs Our Help where you can see videos of what botox has enabled Jillian to do. I am now sharing this press release in hopes of raising more awareness.
For Immediate Release:
Bloggers Raise Money For Child’s Botox Treatment After Large Insurance Co Denies Claim
3 year old child with Cerebral Palsy needs Botox Injections to aid her ability to learn to walk.
Toronto, Ont. September 17th 2011 – Social Media Users rally together to raise money for 3 Year Old Jillian’s Cerebral Palsy treatment after the insurance claim was denied by Manulife Financial. The insurance company denied coverage of the Botox Injections which would allow Jillian to learn to walk because they were being administered in The Hospital for Sick Kids and not a private clinic. Cheryl Peters, Jillian’s mother, fought with Manulife on the phone for months only to be told that it didn’t matter who she spoke to, or what letters she had from the medical team; the claim wouldn’t be covered.
Many kids with Cerebral Palsy are approved for this treatment by different insurance companies throughout Canada. The treatment is given in hospital and not a clinic because sedation is used due to the number of needles required. “Asking a 3 year old sit through that procedure without sedation is barbaric,” says Cheryl.
Dr. Fehlings, Jillian’s doctor, wrote to Manulife, pleading “We are hopeful you will reconsider the coverage of Botox (Botulinum Toxin A) for Jillian as it has been shown to be efficacious for this young girl allowing her to walk, sit and play with her peers.”
Nobody at Manulife read the letter.
Cheryl turned to her blog for support. She wrote about her frustrations and her feelings of failure as a parent and her readers responded. Comments, tweets and facebook posts flooded in in support of Jillian and her plight. Blogger Rhea, of www.OhRheally.com organized an impromptu fundraiser and donations seemed to come from nowhere. In a matter of minutes there was cash and items for a fundraising auction coming in from social media users in Canada and the USA.
Now, thanks to funds raised by the bloggers, Jillian will keep her next appointment for Botox Injections (scheduled for Wednesday Sept 21st) and will regain the movement she is rapidly losing as her previous treatment wears off. She will no longer look to her mother and ask why her legs won’t work. On Wednesday, Jillian will be back on her feet and ready to fight again but for how long? What will happen when this round wears off and her family is left with an enormous bill for the next treatment?