Sanjay Connare needs help. He is running out of time and running out of money to survive, pay rent, medical bills and attorney fees. He needs $20,000, but we are starting with a goal of $5,000 for this fundraiser. Sanjay is in a court battle with his insurance company to get in-network coverage for necessary treatment at The Cleveland Clinic. While he continues to battle, he needs financial support.
He is 32 years old and up until 2017 he was living life normally and accomplishing his dreams. Now, he lives with chronic pain, visits the ER once a month, and the only thing he consumes other than liquids is a prescription cocktail of assorted medications. He hasn’t worked in two years. Sanjay’s full-time job is a literal daily battle for his life.
There is no way to succinctly explain what Sanjay's problem is. He doesn’t know, doctors in Buffalo and Rochester don’t know, and it's becoming a hopeless situation. There’s over 100 minutes recorded on my iPhone of Sanjay telling his confusing, convoluted story of incessant and chronic pain, emergency room visits and hospitalizations with no clear answers from medical professionals. He carries around a backpack full of binders of his medical history in case he has to go to the ER, just in case, in order to make it easier to explain to the doctors that are on duty. He takes this with him if he leaves the house.
He wrote a speech for an insurance hearing that is 17 pages long, here is an excerpt:
"I used to be able to play volleyball. I used to be able to ski. I used to be able to drive to the office and work. I used to be able to teach, do my taxes. I used to be able to eat without fear, and again up until recently I used to be able to drink liquids without any recourse. I used to be able to do a lot of things. Now I have to take drugs often to get out of bed, and I have to take even more when I leave the house in order to minimize my chances of making said trip out of the house, one that involves the ER. The “in-network” qualified experts have stated they can’t be the ones to help me, that after evaluation, outside help is warranted. If these statements and recommendations based on medical necessity are not followed, then this repetitive, drawn out and painful story, the papers in this white binder and the story itself, will detail the continuing decline of my health and ability to live a normal life. The in-network options aren’t working. Sooner or later, I'll be here telling my story again."
He no longer has a normal “day to day” life. Things that took him 5 mins now takes two hours. Things that you don’t even think about, like just being able to eat and go back to work and type an email, he cannot do. He has lost all control of his ability to just live.
“I can’t ever assume that I am going to be able to get out of bed; I can't assume that I'm going to be able to walk over to my computer and send an email. If I can do that, I can’t assume that I am going to be able to finish that email, or that it's going to be sent in 6 hours, 12, or 24,” said Sanjay. “The only consistent thing is there is no consistency. As the weeks, months and years go on, those aspects of my life that I have taken for granted, that are normal, have been stripped away.”
Here’s a little bit of background on his former life: Sanjay is the founder and CEO of Connare Tech, Inc, a startup that specializes in application development and e-commerce, and uses technology to solve problems. Basically, what that means is, if someone has an idea for an app, and they don’t know how to make it happen, Sanjay and his business put them on a path to reality.
For example, one of his clients is The Peppermint Bar
, a WNY organization that re-homes horses, saving them from being slaughtered. Connare Tech’s services helped them create a portal to connect people who have horses to people who are interested in adopting. Sanjay had dozens of clients like this that he helped make their dream a reality.
Through his business, Sanjay also started a college internship program in collaboration with the University at Buffalo that lasted for 10 years.
“It was amazing to see people come in with such passion and to watch how much they grow and learn over a small period of time, and at the end of it, they asked me to write a letter of recommendation for them, letters which were sent to Stanford, Google or the Dept. of Homeland Security,” said Sanjay “It showed me how much of an impact the passing on of knowledge has, which led me to start teaching, and it was then that the business started to experience significant growth, before all this
Sanjay also taught programming to high schoolers at his alma mater, City Honors, for a year and a half. He loved it. His students were excited and energetic, and the experience was satisfying Sanjay’s sense of purpose. Sanjay was on a roll.
He was doing great work that he is passionate about, helping others to do great work, becoming a role model and inspiration for young people, and he witnessed his clients, high school students, and his college interns all start to pursue and live out their dreams. He had to stop all of it
. He had to stop because of the chronic pain, because driving was too difficult (he can only move in a limited capacity). He had to stop because managing his pain alongside teaching became too much to balance along with his own business. He had to stop because he had to prioritize figuring out what was wrong with him.
Sanjay is no longer engaged in any business or teaching ventures in any way, and his entire life is the management of his health and the prevention of any further degradation, though he feels he is failing at it. His health continues to decline quickly, while doctors in both Buffalo and Rochester have proven that they don't know what to do, they have even written letters stating such, explicitly stating that specialized treatment is a medical necessity, and that treatment should come from the Cleveland Clinic.
In the meantime, Sanjay says that he is losing his identity
as he loses touch with most of the people in his life due to the fact that he can’t even move most days, let alone leave the house. He is never without pain
, it's only pain that is manageable, and pain that is unmanageable.
Talking to him, I noticed his lips constantly quivering, and when asked what the pain feels like he said, on the outside, it feels like an avalanche of rocks continuously falling on the area where he feels it, while flaming arrows dart out from the inside. THIS IS WHAT HE DESCRIBES AS MANAGEABLE. When its unmanageable, he just curls up in a fetal position and either waits it out or takes something to try to fall asleep.
What is amazing and completely mind-blowing to me is that through all of this, he remains steadfast and positive. As I sat down with him he was still making jokes even though it hurts him to laugh. He is grateful for the help of his friends, not afraid to ask for help, and pushing forward every step of the way to reach recovery. "I've beaten the odds before and I have no intention of letting them beat me for this go-around".
I hope this narrative expresses how urgent it is that Sanjay starts getting some financial support. I wish there was more we can do with regard to his insurance battle, and getting him the treatment he needs, but these funds will help him in the mean time. Thank you so much for considering :)
Sanjay, an otherwise healthy, happy, successful, and impactful 32-year-old, has been battling his insurance company for two years in order to receive an accurate diagnosis and treatment that is covered in-network for a rare and life-threatening condition. His quality of life is extremely poor and his health continues to decline throughout the process. He needs financial support to pay his bills while he continues to fight for his life.