The new issue of the Pitch that hits stands today features a cover story by Steve Vockrodt about the plight of Finn Bullers, the Prairie Village man who is fighting to keep the 24-hour care he says he needs to survive.
Under the state’s shift to privatized Medicaid under a program called KanCare, Bullers is facing a reduction in care hours to 40 a week.
From the story:
“…on November 15, Bullers sent the state a signed form that allows officials to discuss his health information with the media. But Angela de Rocha, a spokeswoman for the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services, did not return a call seeking comment about Bullers’ health.
In an earlier interview, de Rocha offered an analogy for Medicaid recipients upset by KanCare’s reduction in services. She says it’s as if she had been giving someone a new car every year and then suddenly stopped.
“Your natural response to that is going to be, ‘Why is she being so mean to me?'” de Rocha tells The Pitch. “That’s just human nature. It’s very difficult to take away something once you get it. People get used to it. They think that’s what you need.”
To Bullers, access to caregivers isn’t like getting a brand-new car, but rather is a life-and-death matter. If a tube feeding air from a respirator to a hole in his throat fell out while he was alone, he would have about three minutes to live. If that ever happened, there wouldn’t be enough time for paramedics to reach him.”