Emergency Medical Fund for Bob Rusie

Emergency Medical Fund for Bob Rusie

From Cherie Verber

Bob Rusie, lifelong partner of John Gillespie, is in dire medical straits and in need of immediate financial assistance. He needs surgery as soon as possible and can't be admitted without at least 150,000 pesos

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Update #9

almost 2 years ago

This will be the last update on Fundly. I will continue to post notices on my Facebook profile. The cardiologist said Bob's heart is doing well, and his wound from the amputation is healing steadily, according to his surgeon Tone of the doctors prescribed some medication to take only at night to curb the night agitation and irrational behaviors, which is helping.

Attached is a photo from Bob's birthday dinner at Bistro Monarca restaurant, where he shows off his spiffy new "wheels," his birthday gift from John. This auspicious occasion of his 76th birthday is an event we feared we might never see, so it was cause for great celebration. Easter will be another special occasion for Bob this year.

Big hugs to all!

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Bob Rusie, lifelong partner of John Gillespie, is in dire medical straits and in need of immediate financial assistance. After being exposed to Covid and fortunately developing antibodies, he was nonetheless hospitalized with life-threatening low blood oxygen levels, due to congestive heart failure. As a result of that incident, Bob lost his sight and can currently only see shadows. Subsequent examination showed that he has deep vein thrombosis in SEVERAL spots in his left leg and is not being helped by blood thinners. His foot and leg are turning purple and he is in constant pain. Without surgical intervention, he will likely lose his leg or his life. He will not be accepted into a hospital without 150,000 pesos ($7500 US) up front, and costs ultimately to exceed that amount. This is an immediate emergency, with no time to lose. In addition to donations, if there are individuals who would be willing to do a loan for part of the total with their credit card, that money would be repaid once the funds are actually donated. We should act at the beginning of this week or as soon thereafter as the funds are available to allow us to act. Bob’s life depends on it. These gentlemen have greatly enhanced the quality of life for so many people in Pátzcuaro and everywhere they have lived, and donated generously to anyone in need, and so I am hoping that we can be the wind beneath their wings at this difficult time. Hugs and blessings to all. No donation is too small.

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #9

This will be the last update on Fundly. I will continue to post notices on my Facebook profile. The cardiologist said Bob's heart is doing well, and his wound from the amputation is healing steadily, according to his surgeon Tone of the doctors prescribed some medication to take only at night to curb the night agitation and irrational behaviors, which is helping.

Attached is a photo from Bob's birthday dinner at Bistro Monarca restaurant, where he shows off his spiffy new "wheels," his birthday gift from John. This auspicious occasion of his 76th birthday is an event we feared we might never see, so it was cause for great celebration. Easter will be another special occasion for Bob this year.

Big hugs to all!

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #8

We have hit 25% of our funding goal on Fundly, but we have actually done much better than that, since we also collected funds in cash and via PayPal. This is one more chance to say THANK YOU to all the wonderful people who, truly, have saved Bob's life. To say that he and John are grateful is a gross understatement, but you get the message.

Bob had a checkup last Friday and the doctor was pleased. He said all is progressing as desired and will see Bob again this Friday. Bob still has 24/7 nursing care, but is gaining a little core strength, enabling him to help move himself from his hospital bed to a chair. John is having the first floor library re-fashioned into special quarters for Bob, which should be completed in about 2 weeks. There is a queen sized bed to replace his current hospital bed and a door opening into a full bathroom. The shelves and library books will have to go. Carpenters have installed ramps on the first floor, as there is a single step between various rooms or between the house and the enclosed garden/patio area. In this way, Bob will be able to move himself from place to place without assistance eventually. At this time, he has a transport chair...sort of a wheel chair with small wheels that requires that he be pushed by someone else. He can, however, use his one leg to push the chair backwards to where he wants to go. This is taking time to learn, because of the muscle coordination. But being in that chair allows him to be on the first floor and more in the center of life, which he loves.

His friend Mary Jacobs, who is part of his sculpture class, brought his unfinished work home for him, and is going once a week to help him work on it, to the degree he is able. His depth perception is still off, but it is hard to tell how much is residual effects of falls, strokes, oxygen deprivation, and prolonged infections and how much might be helped by having his new eyeglass prescription adjusted when he is again able to make the trip to Costco in Morelia.

About the time that he is able to move into his new "digs" downstairs, he will probably be able to begin some physical therapy. John plans to buy him a four wheel electric scooter to get around in, as it remains to be seen whether or not he will ever be able to adjust to the rigors of a prosthesis. But his mobility will not be limited. He is eating much better, and so regaining strength. His spirits are improving, as well.

He is at his best during the day, as nighttime seems to bring on more "Sundowners Syndrome" behaviors, still requiring a night nurse to keep him from hurting himself and remembering nothing in the morning. Eventually, it is hoped that all but the day nurse can be relieved of duty, reducing costs. But Fernando helps with wound care, bathing, feeding, and more, so his assistance is still essential.

Removing the blood clots and the infections seems to be just what the doctor ordered for Bob's body to heal, and little by little, it is doing just that. The guys are facing a lot of unexpected expenses with medical/nursing care, medications, house renovations, medical equipment and physical therapy, but the good news is that it looks like we will enjoy Bob's company for years to come.

If you wish to offer them additional financial support, the best way to do it is via PayPal to John's own new account, using his email address of [email protected] I will not be doing more updates on Fundly, but will continue to do so on Facebook. Big thanks and hugs to all of you who have truly SAVED BOB'S LIFE!!!

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #7

Dear friends of Bob Rusie,
We have good news and bad news. The good news is that Bob's vision has returned to pre-Covid state, and with his new glasses, he can see well. His spirits are good, and he is prepared for what is a mixture of good and bad news.
Yesterday, his toes on his left foot turned black and the pain increased. His Covid antibody levels have finally risen to a high enough level that this morning he was able to go to Clinica Patzcuaro, a small private clinic and hospital here, staffed by physicians from Star Medica Hospital in Morelia. They diagnosed gangrene, and the infection was beginning to spread up his leg, so they admitted him immediately, put a nerve block in his lower left leg, eliminating all pain, and told him he would need to have his entire left leg amputated. He and John were both in agreement that that was his only option.
Given his history of high blood pressure, smoking and mini-strokes, they would not proceed with surgery until Bob was checked by a cardiologist, which occurred just a short time ago. He is cleared for surgery tonight and John is on his way back to the hospital, where he will spend the night with Bob in Bob's private room.
We have organized various prayer chains, and know that Bob is in excellent hands. We just want all to go well, given his medical history. Please hold him close in your hearts, thoughts, and prayers.
Needless to say, with the 24/7 private nursing care, medicines, etc, which have been necessary to keep Bob alive while we waited for his antibody levels to rise sufficiently to allow for whatever surgical intervention would be needed, most of the funds already collected by caring friends have already been depleted, and the surgery will be 45,000 pesos, plus additional costs (or about $2300 US).
If you are able to help in any way with the additional costs, the Fundly account is still open, and we have also helped John open his own individual PayPal account, to which donations can be made. The contact for that account is John's email, [email protected]
When surgery is over, I will post an update. Warm regards, Cherie

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #6

Dear friends of Bob and John,
Some cautious optimism from the weekend. Bob is more coherent, and able to have some brief conversations that make sense. His left foot is still about double its normal size, but when it is elevated, it is not too dark, only turning reddish purple if he lowers it to the floor. The hospital bed and special pad to prevent bed sores is working very well. The doctor is scheduled to visit again on Wednesday but Martin will call him today to see if he can come sooner, in hopes of obtaining a medical update on Bob's condition. We are trying to make him eat something every time he is awake, to increase his strength.

Again, thank you to the most recent donors and to everyone for your prayers and well wishes. We have no way of assessing what the upcoming medical costs will be until the doctor gives an update on Bob's condition, but will keep you informed.

Warm regards,
Cherie

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #5

Dear friends of Bob and John,

Bob is stable. He is somewhat incoherent most of the time. There seems to be a slight big of color around his foot, which could be a good sign. Because his kidneys are not working well and he is being treated for a kidney infection, that is manifesting itself in an itchy rash on most of his body. He fights the oxygen and pulls it out and is always trying to get out of bed and walk to the bathroom, refusing to use the hospital portal-potty by his bedside. The other night he got out of bed and tried going downstairs and it took John and the night nurse to restrain him. Today they were able to secure a hospital bed and as they were setting it up, he got out of his other bed and fell, fortunately not injuring himself. He was manifesting some "Sundowner's" symptoms, with extreme nighttime agitation. The doctor prescribed a mild sedative, but even a quarter dose caused extreme drowsiness and lethargy, so that has been discontinued.

Thus far, they have paid in excess of $5000 MX on meds. We are repaying the hospital costs that were charged to our Guardian Angel's credit card today, a total of $2519 US dollars. The doctor visits are $800 MN each time he comes. They just ordered a pressure pad for his bed for $1200 MN. The hospital bed costs $2800 MN per month and $1200 MN today for delivery from Morelia. The nurses cost $1200 MN per day.

Next Wednesday, when the doctor checks Bob again, we will know if there is any possibility of surgery or if we must only focus on palliative care for end of life. That is the sad reality, and it will be one or the other. If he is able to have surgery, we will be right back at the original costs we were looking at, but we will cross the bridge when we come to it and keep everyone informed.

Right now there is about $500 US on hand at the house for daily needs for Bob. There is $5240 US in the bank from donations, and after paying our Guardian Angel for the loan, there will be $2720 US remaining in the bank.

Thank you for your concern, your prayers and well wishes, and your generous donations.

Warm regards,
Cherie Verber

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #4

Dear friends,

It is a roller coaster ride with Bob and his medical care. We are constantly working in two directions. We have found a low cost cremation service and are desperately trying to find a hospital bed to rent. Bob is speaking with a few close friends via face time and planning for his own passing. On the other hand, examinations continue with medical providers. The most recent doctor thoroughly reviewed all his records and made some changes in his care. Bob had a kidney infection, but needed to be placed on a different antibiotic. The doctor found some liver problems, and eliminated his blood pressure medication to increase blood flow. His blood pressure was lower than desirable. He put him on a different anti-coagulant in hopes of dissolving the offending clot. He recommended the Tramadol for pain only as needed for severe pain, as it was causing adverse psychological effects. He is planning on seeing Bob in another week, in the hopes of discovering an increase in his Covid antibodies, which would allow him to be admitted to a public hospital. The doctor is hoping to rent a surgical suite there in order to complete the necessary surgery. He hopes that the clot will either dissolve or be able to be removed at that point. He is also hopeful that Bob will not need to lose the bottom half of his leg but at worst just his foot or at best just his toes on that foot, So we are all in limbo. and hoping and praying. Costs continue to mount, of course, with 24/7 nursing care, medications, medical consultations, etc. We are forever indebted to all donors and most especially to Chris Clement and Martin Esquivel, who are managing all of this, and spending most of every day onsite, helping with Bob, John, and the five dogs. Thank you to everyone for your support and encouragement.

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #3

Dear friends of Bob Rusie and John Gillespie,
The news on Bob's condition is not good. His left foot has continued to swell and turn dark, as a result of what has turned out to be one very large and long clot in his blood vessel. Yesterday, they finally succeeded in having him accepted at the SIXTH hospital they tried, in Morelia. Things have been greatly complicated by Covid, making care largely unavailable and much more expensive than normal. His Covid antibodies test came back as a "5" and he would need a "6" to be considered safe. Therefore, he had to be admitted to a Covid room with all the extra precautions and costs. The original price quote was for $150,000 MN, or $7500 US. After he was admitted, that cost was increased to $250,000 MN or $12,500 US. After a battery of tests, with the surgeon scheduled and on his way, the cost inexplicably increased to $500,000 MN or $25,000 US. A very kind angel had offered his credit card to cover the cost until it could be repaid, but that amount exceeded his available balance and the hospital would not negotiate on the cost. The only option left was to discharge Bob and send him home with medications for pain and the inevitable result of his body's condition.
A portion of the donated funds have already been used for the extensive hospital costs incurred leading to this no-win situation, and the remainder will be used for 24/7 home nursing care, renting oxygen equipment and a hospital bed, medications, and all the inevitable costs associated with "end of life" care.
I am sorry to have to share such sad news. We have thus far been gifted with $5305.62 US ($200 cash, $2487.62 from PayPal, and $2618 from Fundly) from a total of 60 donors.
Accurate records are being maintained, and all costs will be documented, as well. The costs will likely exceed the donated funds, but we will continue to provide daily updates on Bob's condition.
Please keep Bob, John, and all their caregivers in your thoughts and prayers.

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #2

We have just hit 10% of our goal on Fundly. We have received additional funds on Pay Pal and cash. We will keep you updated. Thank you to everyone who has donated. Please spread the word to all your friends. Thank you!

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Cherie Verber posted a new update:
almost 2 years ago

Update #1

Monday, February 1st, is a national holiday in Mexico. Hopefully, on Tuesday, the doctor can meet with Bob and we can move forward to scheduling surgery. Time is of the essence.

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