When Dad Becomes a Patient Too

First there was the son…24762124_15083710300_r.jpeg

Mason Roberts is no ordinary child nor does he have an ordinary disease. Following a healthy pregnancy, he was born with pneumonia and meningitis, resuscitated three times and almost didn’t leave the hospital.

Mason’s chronic health problems have continued as he grew older. As of October 2017, Mason has suffered 62 bouts of pneumonia and has been admitted to the hospital more than 50 times. Mason spends more time in the hospital each year than most people spend during their entire lives. He has had heart and lung failure due to his rare and incurable disease, primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD).

The mountain of medical bills…

With the never-ending medical bills over the years, the Roberts have been fighting an uphill battle financially. Elaine stopped working once Mason was born and it became clear that his medical needs would be a full-time job in and of itself. They receive no government assistance and have been through a bankruptcy, a foreclosure, and a voluntary vehicle repossession. They still face an average balance of at least $50,000 in ongoing medical bills hanging over their heads. To tackle the insurmountable ongoing debt, for years Dave has worked 16 hours a day, six to seven days a week. He works a full-time job five days a week followed by five to six hours every night as a handyman for several companies. He gets up and leaves by 5 a.m. every day and gets home after 10 p.m. He recently worked for 28 days straight.

Then the patient was dad…

This October the Roberts were hit again with an emergency hospital stay but this time, it was Dave who was the patient. While performing maintenance at their home, Dave suffered a severe injury to his right hand, and yes, of course he is right handed. He was rushed to the hospital and subsequently transferred to a hospital in Baltimore specializing in traumatic hand injuries.

Following emergency surgery to remove bone fragments and rebuild the fine bones in his palm, string wires through his index finger, place pins internally and externally and repair severed nerves, Dave is unable to work while he recovers for a minimum of 6 weeks. Unable to work neither his full-time nor any of his handyman jobs that together are required to keep the family afloat. Adding insult to injury, the day Dave was discharged from the hospital, Mason was admitted to Children’s National Medical Center with pneumonia again. Once again, the hospital bills mount but this time it is while the family’s income shrinks.

How you can help…

We are looking to raise funds to help the Roberts family while they recover from their recent hospital stays and bridge the growing gap left with Dave unable to work and more medical bills on the horizon. Will you consider helping?
  • Nadia Hussain 
    • $100 
    • 45 mos
  • Emy Harris 
    • $150 
    • 50 mos
  • Peter Fayne 
    • $250 
    • 50 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 50 mos
  • Carol Sheets  
    • $100 
    • 50 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Kyri Greenleaf-Jacobs 
Laurel, MD
Dave Roberts 
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