A man recently received an automatic 3% cost of living raise and it has thrown his family into a crisis situation. This small raise puts his family income roughly $20.54 above the SCHIP income guideline for his state. His daughter is uninsurable by private insurance standards due to multiple health conditions, and the family had exhausted all options before working to get their children enrolled in the SCHIP program. His wife works with the Children's Defense Fund, sharing their story in hopes that people will listen and see the need for changes within our state and national children's insurance programs. One of the most sought after changes is a buy-in program, so that families above the income guideline but unable to financially or medically qualify for private insurance, have an option. If this legislation goes through in the next session, she will feel satisfied knowing no other families will have to experience what hers has had to experience, not once, but twice, this year. The family has not lost their coverage yet, and are currently hoping for a Christmas miracle as the man speaks with his boss once again about the financial aspect of the problem. The first time the man requested a pay cut, he was ignored despite explaining the tenuous at best situation of his daughter and her medical needs. The second time he was told no. We all wonder, can they be so cold hearted as to deny him a third time, especially around the holidays? We wait with bated breath to find out.
A young girl named KayTar had multiple surgeries in early November. Her recovery was easy despite persistent antibiotic-induced diarrhea, but the week of Thanksgiving, she developed a MRSA infection at her biopsy site. MRSA, or methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus, is quite aggressive and had her parents wondering if they might be spending the holiday in the hospital. Thankfully, the oral antibiotics turned the tide just in time and the family escaped such a fate. Late last week, she began to develop granulation tissue around her stoma site. Granulation tissue is fibrous connective tissue that develops outside of the body, in an attempt to close a wound the body feels should not be there, such as a stoma from a g-button. Friday it was barely visible and by Sunday night, it was almost interfering with the ability to close the button effectively. This is being treated with a round of topical steroids which will hopefully heal it nicely. If not, it may be treated by chemical cautery with silver nitrate. Yesterday, for the first time since her surgery, the young girl has fallen ill. This morning her first words were reported to be, "I fink I'm going to throw up." Her parents are interested to find out if this recent run of health can be attributed to a successful surgery or if it is due to the near nonstop antibiotics the girl has been on since her surgeries a little over a month ago. Only time will tell, but something tells me this might be the first of the many infections she will experience throughout cold and flu season.
A hunter recently brought home his conquest and decided to make jerky. He slaved over the dehydrator all day long, just waiting for a taste of his delicious trophy. Evening came and it was finally finished. He put it into a ziploc bag and left it on the kitchen counter to cool. The hunter then laid down on the sofa and quickly fell asleep. Hours later, he awoke. He could not find the jerky anywhere. He inquired of his son, "Where is the jerky?" He claimed, "On the counter, I only took one piece!" The man could not find the bag of jerky, but this is typical. The hunter might be able to stake out animals, but he is wholly unable to find things in his native environment. His wife sighed with exasperation. "I'll find it." She had to look no farther than where she stood, though. On the floor was an empty ziploc bag, with a small hole torn in it. "I found it. It is on the floor." Realization dawned on the hunter's face, "Nooooo. Nononononono! CAT! DOG! NOOOO!" The delicacy of his handiwork, stolen and eaten by a cat and dog who understand the true power of teamwork. The hunter mourned his great loss and can still be heard mumbling under his breath, "Stupid cat. Dang dog." many times each day.
We attempted to interview a local college student about her upcoming finals, but she just stared at us with her crazy, twitching, exhausted eyes and handed us this photo before stumbling towards the nearest coffee shop. On the back she had scrawled, "And this is only ONE of the stacks." That says it all, doesn't it?