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Author Topic: Woman gained miracle kidney, funding restrictions helped take it away  (Read 3606 times)

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Offline Clark

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Thousand Oaks woman gained miracle kidney, funding restrictions helped take it away
By Tom Kisken


Ten years ago, when Castaneda was a junior at Thousand Oaks High School, a kidney given by the family of an unknown donor transplanted her life from fatigue and illness to energy and hope.

"I felt brand new," she said of what seems a distant memory.

That feeling ended when Medicare stopped paying for anti-rejection medicine because of controversial restrictions that too often push people at least three years removed from transplants into a free fall. When the flow of medicine stopped, Castaneda's new kidney shut down like a broken clock.

Castaneda knows nothing about Medicare's regulations or the reasons for them. When her kidney failed in 2006 because she couldn't afford $1,500 a month for immunosuppressives, she was a community college student who worked part-time as a tutor at the Boys & Girls Club of Moorpark.

"It's basically saying they don't care if we have a way to pay for stuff or not," she said. "It meant find your way to pay for your medicine or you're screwed."

Unrelated directed kidney donor in 2003, recipient and I both well.
626 time blood and platelet donor since 1976 and still giving!
Elected to the OPTN/UNOS Boards of Directors & Executive, Kidney Transplantation, and Ad Hoc Public Solicitation of Organ Donors Committees, 2005-2011
Proud grandpa!


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