Cerebral palsy is a condition affecting body movements and posture. It causes uncontrollable muscle tightness and reflexive body movements that affect some or all of the body, depending on its severity. The symptoms can range broadly, from mild to severe. People who develop cerebral palsy can also suffer co-occurring conditions that affect their intellectual development, including autism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Frequently, the cause of cerebral palsy (CP) is a baby’s brain being deprived of oxygen during labor or childbirth. Sometimes the cause of this is unknown, but in about 10 percent of cases, it occurs due to medical mistakes or negligence. The impact that cerebral palsy has on an individual physically is significant, as is the financial burden of paying for expenses that are related to the condition, which is lifelong.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that the expenses for a lifetime of treatment and care for someone with cerebral palsy exceed $1.3 million. This is an overwhelming amount, and most parents and caregivers of children with CP simply cannot afford it. There are some organizations that offer help to these families, helping to lighten the financial load that is in store for them.
Finding Financial Help for Cerebral Palsy Treatment
If you are a parent or caregiver for a person with cerebral palsy, it’s easy to understand how the cost of treatment and care can limit your loved one’s access to comprehensive and quality care. It’s a troubling situation that shouldn’t have to happen. Fortunately, there are agencies and organizations that can help families financially and otherwise, so that their loved one can receive the care that they deserve.
Parents who take advantage of the help that these organizations offer will feel much more secure about their financial future, and will be able to devote more time to the care of their child.
Some of the sources of financial assistance for families of CP sufferers include:
- Government benefits and programs – Most people who suffer from CP are eligible for government benefits, like Supplemental Security Income (SSI), to help with expenses. There are also government programs that assist with expenses that are associated with long-term impairments. Some of these programs provide families with economic assistance, including public assistance, food and nutrition supplements, affordable health care options, tax credits, and more.
- Early intervention programs – Early intervention programs are typically intended for young children (under the age of 3) who have been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. The programs include therapy and education that may help reduce some of the lifelong effects of CP. Many of these programs are offered to children with CP free of charge.
- Cerebral palsy support organizations – There are many supportive organizations that specifically help families that CP affects. Groups like United Cerebral Palsy, the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, and the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation, offer parents support, education, and access to resource to help pay for medical expenses and housing.
- Community based organizations – Many of these groups are established for the sole purpose of supporting members of the community they represent. They are usually non-profit groups and many will assist families dealing with cerebral palsy financially and with support and education.
- Health insurance – Perhaps the largest contributor to the financial burdens of parents of children or adults with CP is health insurance. It’s intended to safeguard against unexpected or excessive health care costs. Health insurance is a significant resource for those who have it.
Many of the organizations and agencies listed above also have information about additional outlets where parents can receive assistance. The services that they offer range from grants to cover expenses, to scholarships, to supplying families with wheelchairs. There is help available, but you have to seek it.
Legal Compensation for Cerebral Palsy Cases
Because some cases of cerebral palsy are caused by medical mistakes or negligence, parents may be able to obtain financial assistance for their child by holding the doctors, hospital, or other medical professionals accountable for their child’s condition.
The best way to determine if your child’s cerebral palsy was caused by medical malpractice is to see an attorney who is knowledgeable about cerebral palsy lawsuits. They will be able to review your child’s medical records and guide you in how to proceed.
Ross Feller Casey is an experienced law firm with an unmatched track record of winning medical malpractice cases involving cerebral palsy. We have doctors on staff to look at medical records and attorneys who will fight for your family.
All of our cases are handled on a contingency basis, so you will not have any charges until you receive a financial award for your case. Contact Ross Feller Casey today and let one of our top cerebral palsy attorneys review your case for free.