Keeping José at home with his family

Community, General, Our People

José and family members at a backyard barbecue.

José and family members at a backyard barbecue.

At Independence Plus, Inc. (IPI), our nurses provide our patients more than just the physician-ordered medications and treatments required so they can safely live at home. Here’s one example when our nurses spontaneously stepped up to do more.

Recently, after hearing that our patient’s health insurance may terminate because of an inability to continue paying his monthly premium and that could force him to lose his home nursing benefits, several of our nurses stepped up and created a GoFundMe page to help. Latania, RN, said she and a few other nurses set up the page not just to help our patient, but because of how HE has helped THEM.

“He keeps a positive attitude no matter what’s going on,” Latania said. “He has had a hand in training hundreds of nurses in dealing with complex at-home equipment. He was one of the early patients who was able use a phrenic pacer and later a diaphragmatic pacer and cough assist as well. I remember orientating with him and being super nervous, but the orientation went great because he was very calm and very good at explaining his care. He made everything sound easy.”

José Solorzano, now 36, has been living with quadriplegia for the past 19 years and IPI has been providing his skilled nursing services for over 15 years. He is dependent on mechanical ventilation and has a nurse at his side 24/7. Beyond his powerful faith in God, what gives him strength is being cared for at home with his family by his side.

In just a few weeks, however, all of that could change. As a permanently disabled adult, José has been able to remain under his father’s health insurance. However, his father recently suffered a heart attack and his company is relocating out of the country, forcing him into retirement. Beginning in October the family will need COBRA insurance, which is very costly. In fact, the cost to keep his insurance for the next 29 months is around $59,000. If the family cannot raise the funds, José will be in jeopardy of losing his home nursing care and he may be forced to leave his family home and move to a facility. Aside from being taken from his home environment, José’s chances of remaining healthy are likely to drastically deteriorate if that happens.

Latania said José enjoys spending as much time as possible with his family. “Every weekend his family goes outside to barbecue and José enjoys being outside with everyone,” she said. “His family has been amazing despite their age and ailments. I’m sure his father would continue to work until he was a hundred if it meant José could keep health insurance that provides his son with 24-hour nursing.”

To read an earlier blog about José, click here.
To view his GoFundMe account, click here.


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