Help Dawn Regain Mobility and Health
Everyone faces hardships in their lives. Our amazing friend Dawn is experiencing health-related circumstances that most cannot comprehend, much less endure. She is currently battling FOUR chronic conditions with limited treatment options: Mast Cell Activation Disorder, Ehlers-danlos Syndrome, Lyme disease, and Alpha-gal allergy.
She is weathering these storms, and, yet is one of the kindest, most supportive people you will ever meet. She will give you the shirt off her back, then make sure it is to your liking. She has given so much to so many people for years, but now she is the one in need of help.
When I became sick, Dawn was one of the first people to reach out to me. We didn’t know each other but she offered her help and support. This is how she is with everyone. Whatever you are going through, she reaches out with an open heart to listen and to help. When you need a favor, she offers before you can ask. If you’re having a rough time, she wants to know the details; how you feel and how best she can specifically support you. If someone needs a safe place to stay, her door is open. Ask anyone who has ever met Dawn, and they will tell you the same story.
She spent eight years crippled by undiagnosed Lyme disease. She could not walk unassisted without falling, could not drive without going into a ditch because her vestibular system was so affected. A new tick bite in 2006 caused Bell’s Palsy, she was finally diagnosed with Lyme Disease, and placed on intravenous antibiotics that very day. Although developing blood clots from it, that line literally saved her life.
She also has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a genetic connective tissue disease. Her level of function varies. On some days, Dawn can sit up and/or go for a walk, while on others her vertebrae dislocates and she must lie flat on the floor. Two neurosurgeons recommend spinal fusion surgery as soon as finances allow, including making post-op arrangements, for her travel expenses and caregiver. It is a progressive syndrome, so surgical intervention is warranted as soon as possible.
Her Ehlers-Danlos neurosurgeon and Lyme disease physician DO NOT TAKE INSURANCE. This is commonplace for these conditions; all appointments are paid out-of-pocket.
Dawn contracted Alpha-gal, a meat allergy caused by a tick bite, last year. Unfortunately, inadvertent cross-contamination with meat resulted in Mast Cell Activation Disorder, an autoimmune response in which one’s immune system recognizes foods as “foreign.” She required epinephrine at the ER for anaphylaxis that caused labored breathing and throat closure. A Epinephrine has to be given to prevent these symptoms. Her fifth emergency in June led to a 16-day hospital stay.
She is currently on heavy pharmaceutical management; her Mast Cell physician estimates several months until she reaches stability and fine-tunes her protocol, then she will begin an injectable medicine thereafter. (Interestingly, Ehlers-Danlos and Mast Cell often go hand-in-hand).
In the meantime, ALL of her medications must be compounded by specialty pharmacies to avoid inert mammalian ingredients (gelatin, glycerin, etc.) which she is now allergic to because of Alpha-gal, and are found in nearly all prescription and over-the-counter medications. This is extremely costly, as insurance pays little or nothing for compounded medicines.
Dawn has been dedicated to not only survive and support herself, but also to advocate steadfastly and unceasingly for others. She co-founded and ran a Lyme Disease support group for 8 years, was on the board of The National Capital Lyme Disease Association, lobbied with Representatives and Senators for patient-centered legislation, has done numerous TV and news interviews, and does outreach events and public presentations when she is physically able.
Following is a list of healthcare related costs, explaining the financial situation Dawn is in, and what she can expect to incur in the near future.
JANUARY-SEPTEMBER 2019 / DEBT INCURRED MEDICAL BILLS:
•Medicare insurance premiums: $2,700
•Medication, including compounded May-August: $16,600
•Neurosurgeon appointments and imaging: $4,300
•Lyme disease specialist: $1,500
OCTOBER-DECEMBER 2019 ANTICIPATED MEDICAL BILLS:
•Medicare insurance premiums: $1,350
•Medications, including compounded: $3,000
•Hospitalization 6/21/19-7/6/19: $9,250
•Spinal fusion surgery and post-op: $40,000
•Lyme disease specialist: $1,500
GRAND TOTAL: $71,700
She has been without a caregiver and income-provider since March 2016, which has made life significantly harder. A donation to Dawn would give her the opportunity to get and to keep the medical help she needs to manage her conditions. Any contribution is beyond appreciated. THANK YOU!
Family and friends of Dawn Wilson are raising money for the nonprofit Help Hope Live to fund uninsured medical expenses associated with Catastrophic Illness.
Dawn has chosen to fundraise for Help Hope Live in part because Help Hope Live assures fiscal accountability of funds raised and tax deductibility for contributors. Contributors can be sure donations will be used to pay or reimburse medical and related expenses. To make a tax-deductible donation to this fundraising campaign, click on the Give button.
For more information, please contact Help Hope Live at 800.642.8399.
Thank you for your support!
Photo Galleries (1)
November 8, 2019
Keep the faith! I love you so much!
October 20, 2019
STAY STRONG THE LORD IS WITH YOU!
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Help Hope Live
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In honor of Dawn Wilson
Help Hope Live
2 Radnor Corporate Center
100 Matsonford Road
Radnor, PA 19087