Update: Woman with no health insurance gets Medicaid

She had serious health issues,  but no insurance and no way to pay. But getting the community's attention went a long way. Sherry Young is the woman who had been living in the U.S. Virgin Islands and came back to the states to try to get surgery and treatment she and her family say was needed to save her life.

Well, she got the help she needed.

It was mid August when Young was so weak she couldn't even walk from her bedroom. She was staying with family in Ragley.  Records from the Virgin Islands say she had severe vascular disease and needed surgery to improve blood flow to various areas. Sherry Manuel was terrified the person she calls her half sister might not survive. "She's going to die if she doesn't get help."

But Young got her surgery one month later and though frail, is walking and building up her strength. "I was able to get the surgery I needed and help I needed. They went in and did a bypass and I'm doing great right now."

The 44 year old woman succeeded in getting Medicaid and thanks the doctors who took her case--because she says not all accept new Medicaid patients.  "I was really, really bad. I was scared at one point that I was going to lose my life and I was desperate for the help."

Having seen first hand what it's like to face a health crisis with no insurance, she says she will make it a priority to buy health insurance when she can. "It was very scary and frightening. I'm definitely going to look into getting insurance. I don't want to spend the rest of my life on Medicaid. Nobody wanted to help me without insurance or Medicaid."

She says she still suffers drop foot and must do physical therapy. But her dream is to return to the Virgin Islands and open a mobile restaurant and bar. But for now she works to regain her strength.

When Sherry's case caught the community's attention,  it seemed to help her maneuver more quickly through the red tape that often comes for those seeking Medicaid or other help. For more information on Medicaid click here and Health coverage for low income people click here.

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