When Eliesar “Junior” Jaimes was 6 years old, he was diagnosed with epilepsy.
“The first time that he had a seizure, we weren’t aware that he was epileptic,” said his mother, Joan. “My husband thought that he was choking because he had fallen asleep after eating pizza.”
When the seizures continued, they knew something wasn’t right. Joan said she had to watch every movement he made, for fear of another unexpected seizure. His health journey included several procedures, tests and emergency room visits — and the medical bills added up quickly.
“It’s like we never get done paying the medical bills,” Joan said.
The family applied for a medial grant through the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation (UHCCF) and was selected as the organization’s 30,000th recipient.
Now 12, Junior has been seizure-free since 2019, thanks to his epilepsy medication and the help of different types of therapy. The grant helped the family cover the expenses of his treatment.
Since 2007, the UHCCF has awarded more than $61.5 million in medical grants to pay for children’s medical expenses not covered, or not fully covered, by a commercial health insurance plan. The grants help cover medical services and equipment like various therapies, counseling services, surgeries, prescriptions, wheelchairs and more.
“Many of us know families with children who struggle each day, physically, emotionally and financially,” said Matt Peterson, president of UHCCF. “That is why the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation is committed to helping improve the health of children and lessen some of the stress that encompasses the entire family.”
Watch the video above to see Junior’s story.
For more information about UHCCF or to apply for a medical grant, visit uhccf.org.