One Seattle-based personal injury attorney explains your financial options after paralysis when personal health insurance isn’t an option.

If I don’t have insurance, how can I get the necessary health care I need if I’m paralyzed by a spinal cord injury?

Even though the new Affordable Care Act is in the process of getting started, it’s understandable to worry about how to pay for mounting medical bills. Paralysis and other spinal cord injuries can be catastrophic, and affect many other areas of life besides just physical mobility. Figuring out how to add those expenses into an already tight budget may seem impossible. But, if you do suffer a debilitating spinal cord injury, there are options to help offset these costs if you don’t have medical insurance.

Charity Care Law

In 1989, Washington State enacted a law that required hospitals that are part of the Washington State Hospital Association to offer basic medical care to any and all patients who need it, regardless of their ability to pay. This means, if you are paralyzed in a car accident caused by construction on the Alaskan Way Viaduct, and can’t afford to pay for your care, you may qualify for free or reduced care based on your income level. One of your medical care options may be the Northwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury System, which features locations at the University of Washington and at the Harborview Medical Center.

Government-based Financial Assistance Options

There are also options like Medicare or Medicaid to look into as well. Medicare benefits are available to the elderly and some disabled persons; Medicaid provides payment for medical bills for low-income persons and their dependent children. You can learn more about these programs by visiting www.medicare.gov or www.medicaid.gov.

Taking Legal Action

If your accident was caused by another person’s negligence, you may be able to take legal action against that party or his insurance company. There are many aspects of your life that could be affected from paralysis, and your expenses will extend past hospital stays and medication costs. Home modifications, job loss, wheelchair accessible vehicles, assistive technologies, and other at-home care necessities can become a financial burden that the above-mentioned resources may not cover. Contacting an experienced attorney can help you receive the full and fair compensation you may be entitled to because of your injuries, pain, and suffering.

You deserve to have a life of opportunity. This doesn’t change simply because you suffer a spinal cord injury. Don’t let cost be a barrier for you. Contact us today for more information on your legal options after a catastrophic spinal cord injury.


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Bellevue Office
11900 NE 1st Street
Suite 300
Bellevue, WA 98005
Phone: (425) 289-1990
Fax: (425) 289-1991
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Bellevue Office
11900 NE 1st Street
Suite 300
Bellevue, WA 98005
Phone: (425) 289-1990
Fax: (425) 289-1991

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