Jason Roberts Needs Help Paying His Cancer Bills

JasonRobertsCancer.JPG
Dylan Hollingsworth
Last time we checked in, Oak Cliff urban pioneer Jason Roberts had an abdominal cavity filled with post-surgical fluid and was down to a single testicle, but he was otherwise upbeat after a successful battle with cancer.

The cancer is still gone. The pile of medical bills, it seems, are not.

Yesterday, Roberts' ex-wife Andrea (they had an amicable split) launched a FundRazr campaign to help cover expenses and "Build a Better (healthier!) Jason." The goal? A cool $40,000.

She explains the situation in her plea for help:

Over the past ten months, Jason has powered through stage 3 testicular cancer with three rounds of aggressive chemotherapy treatments, one major surgery, and countless invasive tests, doctor appointments, and a few unexpected curve balls along the way. He now has a mountain of medical bills and a rising insurance premium to boot. Please help him pay off these intimidating expenses, so that he can get on with the quality of life that he fights for having and helps others gain every day.

His latest health update is that he has been cancer free since his surgery in December, although he's struggled with complications from said surgery. He is currently in the hospital taking antibiotics to fight an infection, and is getting better and stronger each day. The doctors are discussing the next steps, and our hope is that the antibiotics will do their job and no more invasive procedures will be needed.

If your life has been touched by Jason in any way, or if you just feel moved to help, please donate whatever you can spare to assist with "Building a Better (healthier) Jason!!"

Since the campaign was launched 17 hours ago, 45 people have kicked in $2,240, which is a damn good start.

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11 comments
peaceseeker
peaceseeker

We need to know where to donate $$$$!


John1073
John1073

Another prime example of our failed health care system. Yes they may have saved his life, but now they plan on ruining it financially.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

The doctors and hospitals will accept less, much less, than the original bill. They give my ins co at least 50'% off. When I was off insurance they were all very good at offering extremely generous payment plans.

Quit worrying about the bills and keep staying well.

if6were9
if6were9

A lot of folks need help with this........I guess you'll be giving them the same kind of publicity?  

PersistentID2345
PersistentID2345

@John1073 Seems like a failure of our payment system where there is little pricing pressure by consumer choices on regular services because we expect insurance to help pay for daily care and no stop gap on the major risks because it would drive insurance rates too high.

I have max out of pocket per year that truly pays 100% after the max is hit with a high deductable so I am stingy on what I buy but will not get clobbered on the big stuff, which is the genuine purpose of insurance - to avert risk that you cannot handle.

Word of advice: make sure beforehand that your max out of pocket per year truly covers everything once you hit it.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@John1073 so goes the healthcare industry.  You ever been told by one of the bill collectors, well you had your kid right, so send us the money

Guesty
Guesty

@primi_timpano The story suggests he has health insurance, which means the discounts have already been given in the contract price between the insurer and the healthcare providers. He might get some further reductions, but let's not pretend these bills will magically disappear if he ignores them.  I agree he should be focused on getting well, but those otherwise inclined to kick in to help him out shouldn't think that it doesn't matter if he pays.

It might help things along if there was more transparency in how much of his bills were not covered by insurance.  $40,000 is fairly high for a single year, even with very high deductibles and co-pays.  I'm not saying impossible, but I would guess this fundraising effort will be more effective if people feel like they know what costs they are being asked to cover.  It also might provide some good general information as to how broken our healthcare insurance system is if you can rack up $40,000 in medical expenses for one illness even if you have insurance.  Just a thought.  

Rumpunch1
Rumpunch1

@if6were9 Yes, there are a lot of people who need this help, however I wouldn't criticize the Observer for getting the word out on Jason. While it would be nice to give everyone a forum to publicize their effort, if they are not relevent to DO readers, they answer would be "who?"

As friends, we have an obligation to let everyone who knows them to become aware of their situation and let them decide if they want to help.  Jason is fortunate to have made connections with many DO readers, therefore his friends have an obligation to use every means necessary to reach those people. 

Does this make Jason more important than others.  Absolutly not.  This blog is just an effective way to put out the message.  I haven't seen Jason in a few years, therefore I found out he had cancer through this blog.  I have now found out through this same blog the fundraising effort.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@Rumpunch1 @if6were9 Well said Rum, Jason appears to be a friend of UP so sharing the story with us ok.  Recently a friend of mine was diagnosed with breast cancer.  The bar we frequent did a fundraiser and I told all of my friends so they could donate to help pay medical bills.  the local chili's donted 10% of one nights revenue to her as well.  No single person is more important than another but if you have the means to get the word out, do. Ive seen people on Twitter ask for retweets from local celebrities for a good cause and sometimes they do, and it helps

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@primi_timpano @Guesty I tried to decipher the medical bills for my wife and son when he was born and he spent 17 day in the NICU,  freaking nearly impossible to understand.  I thought I had how much we would owe figured out and by the time we were done I was out of pocket a few grand more than I had calculated.  

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