Perseverance Ends With “Racing Green” Wheelchair for Grateful Patient at Lakeview Health Center

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At Lakeview Health Center, employees went to bat for Everett Fields to get him a new wheelchair. Some years ago, Fields broke his back in a diving accident. He’s been using a wheelchair ever since. At first, he said, he used a typical hospital wheelchair, but his life changed for the better when he got a lightweight chair; it made him more mobile.

Because Medicare only pays for a new wheelchair every five years, Fields must take good care of his equipment. About a year ago, his old chair was wearing out and when he saw Dr. Jo Ann Rosenfeld at a medical appointment, she asked about it. Fields was due for a new chair, so Dr. Rosenfeld and the team at Lakeview worked with Fields to request a new wheelchair.

Over the course of the year, each time Fields came in for a medical appointment, Dr. Rosenfeld would ask, “Did you get your wheelchair yet?” And the answer was always no.

This is when Dr. Rosenfeld began writing letters and making phone calls. Even when patients meet the criteria for equipment or treatment, they still have to complete lengthy and sometimes complicated steps to get what they need. Without the intervention of Dr. Rosenfeld and others, Fields probably would not have gotten a new wheelchair.

One of the requirements to get the new equipment is to get a physical therapy evaluation, so Dr. Rosenfeld set that up. Another is to complete several forms, which Fields did.

“Dr. Rosenfeld was great. She was really diligent about it. When I told her I still hadn’t gotten the wheelchair months later, she was flabbergasted,” Fields said.

Eventually, Fields got his new equipment, and he is very grateful. Dr. Rosenfeld described the color as “racing green.”

Fields says he has been coming to Lakeview for years, and that he appreciates how friendly the staff is and how quickly they always get him in to see the doctor.

“It’s a ten-minute wait. Tops!” he said. “I go right up to the desk and the whole staff is really good there. They’re very informative.” He says he definitely recommends Lakeview to his friends and family.

For more information about Lakeview Health Center, visit www.mchcinc.org or call 707-263-7725. Lakeview Health Center is owned an operated by Mendocino Community Health Clinic, a local non-profit organization providing access to health care for all.

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