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1,000th Uninsured Virginia Patient Secures Access to Quality Medical Care Through Virginia Cares Uninsured Program (VCUP)
Date:7/10/2008

Year-Old Patient Assistance Program from the Patient Advocate Foundation and the Commonwealth of Virginia Helps Uninsured Patients Access Healthcare and Pay Medical Bills When Diagnosed with a Chronic, Debilitating or Life-Threatening Illness

NEWPORT NEWS, Va., July 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) - a national, non-profit organization based in Virginia providing assistance to tens of thousands of patients every year who face access to healthcare issues due to financial or insurance denials - and the Commonwealth of Virginia announced today that the Virginia Cares Uninsured Program (VCUP), a free statewide patient assistance program launched in July 2007, has helped its milestone 1,000th patient access important healthcare and social services during a time of medical crisis.

The patient, Berta Palucho, contacted the VCUP after her leg was amputated as a result of being struck by a car in a hit-and-run incident as she crossed the street. The VCUP is helping Palucho secure a new prosthetic leg at no cost, as well as food donated through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which she will continue to receive indefinitely. The cost of the new prosthetic alone would have cost Palucho close to $20,000 in out-of-pocket expenses.

"I am so thankful for the Virginia Cares Uninsured Program and the immense help it provided to me - both in terms of the direct financial support and the emotional benefits I gained by knowing that people were fighting for quality medical care on my behalf," said Palucho, a 26-year-old Falls Church resident. "Without this program, I'm not sure how I would have been able to make ends meet with the costs of my care and having to navigate the new challenges of being an amputee on my own."

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Bureau of the Census, approximately 47.6 million Americans do not have any form of health insurance. The 2005 Census estimates that in Virgin
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SOURCE Patient Advocate Foundation
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