Thursday, March 17, 2011



This is me with my sister and best friend Martha (she’s the one with the short hair). She has had 3 successful kidney transplants throughout her 59 years, all donated by siblings (2 brothers and sister). She is in need of another transplant and there are two possible donors that have been waiting in the wings SINCE OCTOBER 2010, one is our brother, the other my daughter.

We believe Marty is also on the cadaver list, but we can’t be sure because clear, concise information has been so difficult to obtain from the University of California at San Fransisco (UCSF).
Marty is very ill and on the cusp of going back on kidney dialysis, but she doesn’t do well on it, so I don’t know how long she can keep on keepin’ on.

Does anyone out there in Tumblr-land have any contacts at UCSF, anyone we could discuss her case with? Brick walls are what we have been hitting, we can’t even get vials sent to Martha to be tested for antigens, a very basic step in the transplant process. (Actually, Marty did send UCSF vials back in October, but since they have dragged their feet, they are no longer viable. They have yet to send more.)

Martha has great insurance. She is able to maintain the medications required after transplantation and has always paid her medical bills. But we are discovering that the finance department at UCSF is telling her she needs $30,000 upfront before they will even talk about a transplant, let alone begin testing. Her insurance gave her a $2,000 deductible quote, which we can take care of, but we don’t understand where the $30,000 number is coming from.

Marty was also told that if the possible donors do not match, then their insurance is required to pay for all testing that was done. That’s a new one on us and a sure killer to the donor program if I ever heard one. We are hoping that we have been misinformed and that someone will step up and correct it.

Going through 3 transplants you learn the ropes, but it looks like the rules have now changed. We are appalled that this financial requirement, if it is indeed required, will ultimately take Martha’s life. If you can help in any way by providing contact information with someone who is willing to listen to our plea for help, please let me know as soon as possible. Every day that passes means a tougher time for Marty.

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