www.SedonaObserver.com
   
Insurance Industry Destroys Lives - Justice for Collins
   


INSULT TO INJURY

How the insurance industry destroys lives

The Rachael Collins Story

   

                                                        

It Could Happen to YOU

How One Accident, Fraud, Bad Faith and the Government

Can Demolish Your Life in an Instant

 

Part 1

Story by Rachael Collins

Published November 25, 2010

For your benefit, learn from our tragedy. The next victims can also be other people.
– Simon Wiesenthal, Holocaust survivor

Editor's Note:

It's Thanksgiving Day across America, a land divided between economic and financial extremes, of excessive have-mores and forgotten have-nots. Many Americans find themselves struggling to save their homes and jobs this holiday season, in a futile chase of the ever-elusive American dream and shrinking dollar. Both fade into the horizon as the U.S. comes closer to a Third-World nation, poised on a critical cusp between gluttonous excess and total disintegration.

Among the invisible, forgotten and downtrodden citizens hanging by a thread, Arizona resident Rachael Collins battles a callous and corrupt insurance industry that left her for dead after an auto accident. While many people think "insurance fraud" implies "any act committed with the intent to fraudulently obtain payment from an insurer," there is another lesser-known and more insidious form in which the insurer deliberately conspires to deny a claim or rightful payment to the consumer.

This is precisely what happened to Collins. But it doesn't end with the auto insurance industry. Instead, the venomous trail extends to that industry's bedfellows -- the corrupt medical and legal system.

More than five years later, Collins continues to fight for her life and her rights - what few remain in the United States of Hypocrisy, formerly known as a democracy.

Here is her perturbing story about her experience with auto insurance industry anti-consumer tactics and what Americans can likely expect after a debilitating accident. In this context, it represents an ALLEGATION under the First Amendment and one that warrants a rigorous journalistic investigation.

Until time allows for a proper analysis and thorough report, we present Collins' story in her own words and without names and quotes in accordance with the Journalism Code of Ethics to serve as a CAVEAT for the common good until a detailed journalistic investigation can be conducted to validate her claims.

But, after four years of researching and reporting health insurance industry crimes against humanity, we do smell a rat and our journalistic instincts tell us that it isn't Collins, whose mountains of documented evidence have yet to be examined by a journalist who has the weeks of time and financial backing to dissect her story.

Buckle your seatbelt for this one...

 

 

Insult to Injury: The Rachael Collins Story

 

While awareness of traffic accidents caused by cell-phone-distracted drivers is on the rise, the media’s primary focus remains centered on the deaths – and none of the horrors sustained by the disabled and traumatized victims who survive, only to suffer total injustice and destitution in the aftermath of their traumatically changed lives. 

 

To date, major media and broadcast networks have failed to report the tragic case of 47-year-old Rachael Collins, a formerly successful businesswoman and athlete who was rear-ended in Phoenix, Ariz., at a red light in December 2004 by a driver with his eyes focused on his cell phone instead of the road.  

 

Collins, who would never be “herself” again, has been desperately trying to report the truth about her horrific experience, one that she continues to live nearly six years to the day after a careless driver and reckless auto and medical insurance industries left her for dead, without medical or financial recourse to prevent other hapless and innocent motorists from falling prey to the same heinous and heartless systems that abandoned her. 

 

And, according to Collins, IT COULD HAPPEN TO YOU.

Most Americans are just one tragedy away from disaster and they don’t even know it.  Says Collins: “One car accident could prevent you from working for weeks, months or even years. Combined with medical bills, how many people can afford that?”

 

And then there’s the auto insurance company circus. Let the games begin.

                                            

 

Left for dead

Endlessly bombarded with the slick auto insurance ads from Progressive and Geico, motorists are brainwashed to think they’ll be covered for damages and injuries after an accident like Collins’. But, after being immediately disabled by the accident and paying for hundreds of treatments out of her own pocket and eventually forced into bankruptcy, foreclosures and homelessness, Collins still has not received a dime of reimbursement or compensation from the at-fault insurance company, nor from her own company, with which she was highly insured for 18 years. 

 

That is just the tip of the iceberg of what was to follow for Collins.

 

Soon after, she became indigent and was forced to rely on Arizona state health insurance (AHCCCS), under whose doctors and coverage she was repeatedly denied surgery for severe and worsening injuries (known in the rest of the country to be a medical emergency condition).

 

As a result, she almost died. 

                                        

                                                    Rachael Collins recovering in the hospital...

 

Collins says: What shreds of decency and dignity are left in this country, when our very lives have no value to individuals and entities that we are supposed to trust the most?  Americans had better start looking both ways and read in between the lines of their insurance policies, anticipating industry bad faith and fraud.

 

Nowhere to turn

Collins’ riveting story reveals another side of the damage wreaked by distracted drivers that media programs, such as “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and “Larry King Live,” have neglected to highlight so far: the alarming truth about how motorists’ lives can be totally destroyed following an accident as they are abandoned by health care providers, auto insurers, Social Security/Disability and the government agencies who dupe Americans into believing they are designed to serve them.    

 

Collins has furnished the media, as well as numerous political representatives, with vast and well-documented records as evidence of her countless experiences of alleged blatant fraud, violation of state and federal laws, malpractice, collusion, bad faith in addition to alleged deliberate attempts to ensure that she would not be treated for her serious injuries and withheld resources to enable her escape from her situation. 

 

Yet, despite the fact that Collins has recorded and submitted the most amazing cache of well-documented testimony – the equivalent of a professional investigative reporter’s research – it continually remains untouched by a stonewalled media and lame politicians, both of whose whitewashed public relations campaigns boast a commitment to public service.

 

Until now.

                                    

                                      Just some of Collins' mountains of documented evidence...

Exposing the truth

The time is long overdue for Collins’ story to be heard – not just for her sake but in the interest of the common good. And that is going to require many endless inches of column space to report – something that papers today have little to profit from or space to offer since investigative reporting in America has reduced to 146 Twitter characters. It’s like telling Ida Tarbell to reveal the truth about U.S. Steel within the confines of a postage stamp.

 

This article represents Part 1 of a series exposing the essence of Collins’ story.  Think of it like peeling the layers of an artichoke to get to the heart. Apparently, it’s a core truth that the shipwreck of journalism remains unwilling to expose.

 

How can this happen and why does the system turn its back on accident victims like Collins?

 

Remember the Five W’s of journalism? Who, what, when, where and why. These have become the questions no longer asked by the media; just focus the lens on the high-speed chase, the wreckage and the body bag.

 

A voice for the disenfranchised

A former strategy consultant, author and speaker with a passion for social justice, Collins says:

 

I was brought up knowing right from wrong. Whether a person is acting ethically or lawfully seems pretty black and white. But these days, breach of contract, malpractice, straightforward fraud or failure to protect the consumer all seem to be issues to be debated at great length by attorneys after a victim loses something vital due to the actions of another. 

 

Whether or not the plaintiff is compensated depends on how well the attorneys argue – not if they are being truthful. The injured party can become a pawn subjected to further mental and emotional despair.

                                                        

                                                         Are courts ruling in favor of insurance companies?

 

Since I have lived in Arizona, I have seen many laws broken in such a flagrant manner that it is shocking. For years, I experienced fraud in every single business deal and real estate transaction by licensed professionals. Every time it happened I thought, ‘It can’t be possible they just did that,’ but it was − and eventually I found out why.

 

Perpetrators of white collar crime have little accountability or consequences in this society, and there’s almost nothing you can do about it except write letters until you are blue in the face or empty your pockets in lawsuits. Not a single one of my many well-documented complaints to consumer protection groups was ever investigated or resolved fairly, no matter how blatant the crime. 

 

I began to expect the response letters that always began with ‘We find no fault with… (perpetrator)’ and no justification for their decision. I began to feel like I had fallen down the rabbit hole in ‘Alice in Wonderland.’  Nothing was quite ‘real’ and certainly not right.

 

The protection that insurance companies, doctors and government entities enjoy in many states is almost iron-clad. It can be impossible to find contingency attorneys willing to invest in an uncertain outcome. Plaintiff attorneys know that insurance companies hire highly paid defense experts who know how to stack the deck against plaintiffs, regularly winning lawsuits even if at the expense of a person’s life.

 

If the perpetrator’s insurance company is unwilling to settle up front, it may be hard for the plaintiff to even get to trial. It’s a game in which money and influence win and the insurance companies have an unending supply of both. This is FUNDAMENTALLY wrong when the value and objective is monetary greed over human life. 

 

Citizens have little chance for justice in America today.

 

I have spent thousands of hours fighting for treatment for my serious injuries, to force insurance companies to deliver on the promises of their contracts and to be able to acquire the measly amount of disability benefits that I am entitled to, after working for 70 hours a week my entire career – with NO result.

 

I have more than a dozen large binders, documenting every detail of every battle and the outcome is always the same – IGNORE, DELAY, DENY.  And, they are well-aware that people like me could die.”

                                                             

                                                                         The mantra of America's insurance industry...

 

Outside of flawed legal recourse, I learned that I had to be my own advocate and one for others as well. Activism for consumer awareness, systemic change and media attention became my only tool. If Americans need to treat each other more humanely, holding insurance companies accountable for their brutal behavior would be a significant start!

Rendered homeless

The severity of her spinal injuries, loss of use of a vital organ and mind-numbing pain left Collins unable to participate in any normal life activities beyond basic care and seeking more than 450 treatments over five years. After living off her savings and income from investment property for four years, the burden of medical expenses that failed to fix her disabling injuries – non-reimbursed by either auto insurance company despite admission of fault − forced Collins into bankruptcy and foreclosure of her home and several investment properties in 2008. 

 

Collins sold her possessions, furniture and appliances one-by-one on Craig’s List for a year to pay for necessary care, mortgages and food, living isolated in her empty home for a year while she struggled to recover without any help. After finally losing her home in May 2009, Collins was forced to live in her car with disabling injuries and severe pain.

Collins' homeless campout...

She suffered the humiliation of applying for Food Stamps and Medicaid insurance and months later, despite her destitution and disability, was denied. She eventually got the desperately needed benefits by showing up at a DES office and threatening to expose to the media the discrimination she had witnessed of others being given benefits immediately with almost no documentation. 

 

She was instantly approved.

 

AHCCCS or hindrance?

Although the Food Stamps were life-saving and her only source of income to eat, according to Collins, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) medical insurance proved to be an unimaginable nightmare. 

 

I spent the entire year of 2009 trying to be tested, diagnosed and treated for my already severe and worsening injuries,” she says. “My doctor agreed that I needed surgery but failed to make the needed referrals to get it. I had to do it all alone, and believe me when I say that the patient has absolutely no influence in appealing to health insurers. What you are likely to get is only as good as the recommendation your last doctor made for you – if s/he bothered to.” 

 

Collins explains: “I spent hundreds of hours preparing and submitting medical files and reports myself, researching doctors to submit authorizations to, driving paperwork down to the AHCCCS offices, all the while appealing to my doctor to help me (by doing his job), and he never did.                                                                             

                                                              

                                                               Collins continues to face medical industry resistance.

 

As my condition got worse and worse, resulting in several frightening ambulance trips to the hospital for paralysis and pain, I was subsequently turned down for medically necessary surgery FIVE times by AHCCCS by the end of 2009. I kept pleading with my doctor to help me because I knew that I was going to die.

 

Instead, according to Collins, her doctor was contacted by the very AHCCCS medical director she was battling in court, with the result that her doctor withdrew his recommendation for surgery − giving AHCCCS a lame excuse not to provide or pay for it.                                                                                        

Could that be called collusion

A continual crisis

In December 2009, Collins finally procured surgery for her severe sciatica and life-threatening organ failure − paid for by her retired military parents, OUT of the state of Arizona. The neurosurgeon confirmed that Collins had been living for years with a condition considered to be a “MEDICAL EMERGENCY.”  But that is not the end.

Think of it like a Hurricane Katrina that never quite went away. 

Six years after the accident, Collins still lives in chronic pain with permanent spinal injuries. (The average full recovery time for an injured auto accident victim with whiplash alone is 10 years or longer while disc and spinal injuries usually result in disability and accelerated spinal degeneration.)  She has not worked, had any social life, or even been able to exercise since the accident. Instead, her life is consumed by trying to survive every day with no advocacy, income or home. 

Collins has remained homeless for nearly two years now, living primarily in her car, interspersed with brief stays at the homes of a few people who have been kind enough to assist her. But no one seems to understand that, without income, it’s impossible to get shelter. Collins says she has found that compassion is in short supply these days −so short, in fact, she has rarely seen it. 

Here is how she describes it:

I have not had one single philanthropic organization, women’s group, private individual or government entity in Phoenix offer me a penny of financial support – even knowing that I am a single, injured woman living in my car! THAT may be the most devastating reality of this whole experience. 

 

But I have to profusely thank two religious organizations − Catholic Charities and the volunteers at St. Vincent de Paul Society − for literally keeping me alive with a phone card here, a gas card there, maintaining a storage unit, and receiving mail since I have no address. I limp along day-to-day, living as creatively and bravely as I can.  

 

Eevidence mounts during yet another temporary campout.

 

To be fair, my story has had no publicity since the both mainstream and alternative media, as well as several TV stations, failed to report it. However, at least 100 doctors, lawyers, politicians, reporters, government workers and acquaintances have known how completely devastated I have become physically, financially, mentally and emotionally − and not one has even offered a helping hand. My excellent credit has been so destroyed by my bankruptcy and foreclosures that I don’t even have a bank account or a credit card.  It’s a hard way to live.

 

Lacking: legislation and compassion

According to Collins, her horrifying story proves that what happened to her can happen to anyone, due to motorist irresponsibility and poor legislation regarding cell phone use during driving, slack regulation of greedy insurance companies that value money far more than human lives, and the lack of empathy in individuals at-large for the tragedy of another – as if it couldn’t happen to them.

 

You know, the me-versus-we mentality of a capitalistic society that, for the past three years, the Observer has attributed all of the nation’s woes to, especially the lack of affordable health care and housing as well as living wages.

 

Says Collins: I was far luckier than many people involved in an accident might be. I had money, assets, persistence and knowledge of alternative treatments that enabled me to live without the use of a vital organ – which no doctor I know could have done. Why were they so callous as to ignore my suffering and inability to provide income for myself, a situation that would certainly have been intolerable to themselves?

 

One viable alternative: death

Collins asks: What about the elderly, people injured worse than me, or those without the education and tools to fight for what they need? And that is a LOT of people, many of whom lose everything. Their health deteriorates and then they die completely unnecessary deaths.

 

Although shocking, it also reveals that, for many who are disabled and forced to survive with little resources in traumatic conditions, death can seem a better alternative to living a life of exhaustion, humiliation and pain. 

 

Collins reveals: I am one of the strongest people I know, and I am not ashamed to admit that I have thought about suicide many times since my accident because it seems the only way out of a horrible, painful way to live. I’m a person, not a robot. I went for counseling once and they tried to admit me involuntarily to a mental institution because I admitted that I was suicidal. I was only saved by the admitting psychiatrist who said I was the most rational but traumatized person he had ever seen. I got no counseling help. Talk about adding Insult to Injury!

 

Suicide is the number one cause of death of teenagers in the U.S., and the exit strategy for many seriously injured or traumatized adults who cannot get the help they need. When there is no hope, there are few options. Is this evidence of a health care, insurance, legal and political system in America to be proud of?

                                                              

Disability: a taboo topic 

Being disabled is unexplainable to someone who is not.

 

As Collins explains: It’s very frustrating for my mind to be so clear and remember who I ‘was’ when my body can’t do what it used to. I want to believe that somehow I can get back to living, turn on my Web sites and start working again, go to a party or a networking event and have a romantic relationship. But I have not been able to do any of these things as often as I have tried. My life is consumed with basic survival which others don’t seem to be able to see. 

 

“People (and doctors) always tell me that I ‘look fine,’ as if I must be making up my limitations and pain. When I came to terms with my prognosis last year, after being ‘off the radar’ for five years, every friend and former colleague who I shared my condition with literally had no response. I guess they can’t imagine how the ‘Energizer Bunny’ could possibly be disabled, and they don’t want to think about it.

                                                                    

                                                                     DENIAL: Do Americans refuse to face the truth?

 

The culture of denial

As a psychologist, I learned firsthand how denial and fear manifest. Not one of my long-term friends ever initiated a conversation about what happened. They just disappeared. I was sad and bewildered, swallowed hard and kept moving forward. I guess no one wants to think it could happen to them, Collins explains.

 

As with many people who are disabled, my internal conditions and spinal injuries are invisible to most people and so they don’t understand why I don’t just ‘get over it’ and ‘get back to work’ as I have heard many times. Their ignorance and lack of compassion cuts deeply. I have endured many brutal comments and judgments, which are extremely hard to digest when I am so full of loss and stress, juggling dozens of ‘must-do’s’ each day and struggling to keep a positive front in the face of a very un-positive reality. 

 

It’s hard enough to try to appear somewhat normal without constantly hearing people tell me that I deserved it or that it must be my karma. Others say: ‘Find a paraplegic to marry who will take care of you’ or some other convenient way to distance themselves from offering a helping hand. Believe me, they would NOT feel the same way if THEY were in the shoes of those with life-limiting circumstances, she concludes.

 

But walking a mile in someone else’s moccasins, as the old saying goes, is not part of the mindset of a culture steeped in self-absorption and greed.

 

No way out 

According to Collins, health insurers, doctors, social security/disability and lawyers all work together to protect each other and have squarely placed the burden for medical recovery on the shoulders of the patient – who doesn’t have a medical degree. 

                                                                             

                                                                

Although it is “sick,” the goal of the system is to get rid of a sick person as quickly as possible, usually with a prescription for a painkiller, anti-depressant, sleeping pill, anti-anxiety medication or antibiotic − regardless of the fact that, in most cases, this is NOT going to cure the patient’s ailments at the root cause and often result in dependence on more drugs for side effects or prescription addiction.  Little time, attention or value is placed on diagnosis and treatment to eliminate the condition.

 

Says Collins, Knowing what I do now about my injuries, if I had been accurately diagnosed following the accident, I could have been treated and returned to excellent shape almost immediately. That is a devastating reality that could not have been unintentional on the part of my treatment providers. 

 

When I learned how ‘classic’ my symptoms were of common accident-caused injuries, I was angry. When other doctors and lawyers refused to believe I had not been tested properly, diagnosed and treated immediately with those symptoms (even five years later), it became my fault − even though records of my symptoms and their lack of diagnosis and treatment well-documents the truth.

 

“Instead, I PAID for the privilege of spending years of my life trying to get my spine ‘untwisted’ and vital organ function restored in vain − having hundreds of office visits and primarily remaining functional through my own knowledge and efforts.

 

Scot-free

As the Observer reported in its first series of articles in 2007 on the state of the medical industry (see “From Hippocrates to Hippocrates,” “Condition: Critical” and “Prognosis: Disastrous – October 24, 2007), in the health care system today, patients pay with their wallets and their lives while doctors and insurers have little-to-no accountability.                                                                               

                                                                     

Consumers may be shocked to learn they can’t sue a doctor or chiropractor for overtreating them and rarely for not diagnosing their maladies properly. In Arizona, a malpractice attorney may take only 1 out of every 100 or 150 cases they review. Even being killed by the mistake or neglect of a licensed practitioner is not enough for a malpractice suit. 

 

Doctors win 9 out of 10 lawsuits in Arizona and rarely offer any settlement in advance. And don’t count on the boards of medical, chiropractic or nursing examiners to protect you from licensed practitioners. The standard response to more than 90 percent of all complaints is: “We find no fault with this practitioner…” (i.e., person whom you paid and trusted).

 

Collins appealed a denial of the Board of Medical Examiners for misconduct and malpractice of the neurologist who neglected to help her get needed surgery, while he ignored her ambulanced trips to the hospital and the letters she wrote him, pleading for help because she could not live in severe pain and without critical organ function any longer. 

                                                                          

                                                         

 Case dismissed

She describes the horrendous situation at the BME hearing: It was physically difficult enough to get to the hearing and then extremely traumatic. I gave my videotaped testimony of the ordeal my doctor had put me through in front of a panel of doctors and an audience of others whose complaints had been denied. My doctor’s attorney was present and ironically helped me from the stand after my testimony because I was shaking and could barely walk. He later told the board that, despite my testimony, the doctor had acted within the ‘standard of care.’ Only one other doctor had an attorney present, so I knew that my doctor was well-aware of his malpractice. 

 

Then I had to listen to the stories of dozens of other injured people, some who claimed sexual misconduct on the part of their doctors and several of whom were there on behalf of a loved one who had DIED in their doctor’s ‘care.’ All of their complaints had already been dismissed by the board and this was our last chance for a personal appeal and justice. 

 

I left the hearing shaken to the core by the incidents of brutality I heard and obvious protection of the medical professionals, with no regard even for the lives of patients who had died. I knew that if I had not taken matters into my own hands and asked my parents to pay for surgery out-of-state, I would have died too. I felt sick to my stomach and grateful that I was still alive! I received a letter weeks later than my complaint of malpractice was again denied.

 

Deaf ears

Collins has fought hard for her basic right to life, spending hundreds of hours appealing to the Arizona Department of Insurance, Attorney General’s Office, Board of Medical Examiners, Department of Health and Human Services, her state representative and both Arizona Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl. 

 

Collins states that her concise reports, with binders of evidence, have been completely ignored. No investigations were ever conducted, and she has received no assistance from any of the numerous Arizona consumer protection resources that she has gone to in dire circumstances. 

 

Collins says, Although it’s incredible to believe, management employees of DES, the Social Security Administration and disability office will not conduct internal investigations of misconduct, discrimination and violation of HIPAA and federal laws – unless THEY are investigated by federal agencies.  Talk about lack of accountability! 

                                                      

 

Collins notes that not one attorney would accept her well-documented insurance fraud cases because of the length of time she was incapacitated, the extent of her financial devastation, the power of the auto insurance companies and doctors who almost always win in court and the expense it would cost to fight for justice on her behalf in a catastrophic injury case. 

 

Social "Insecurity"

Collins says, The toughest part of my reality is waking up every day knowing that I have to do at least eight hours of paperwork, documentation on the computer and phone calls to coordinate the care I need; research treatments that may help me; and continue with the never-ending disability process.

 

Then I have to respond to requirements of DES and AHCCCS to retain the only benefits I have in the face of state program slashing; keep files on all aspects of my cases and medical files current; create and send reports of the ever-occurring frauds; and fight for my rights, creatively keeping the basics of a cell phone and storage unit with no income. 

 

People I have stayed with have witnessed this never-ending all day ‘job’ and are astounded by what an injured person is required to do to try to survive. There is no rest for those ignored. In spite of my best efforts, without the intervention of someone to help, my life has continued to degrade beyond homelessness to not being able to repair my laptop or my car – the most basic tools I had to get done the things that I need.

 

There is never a day of pleasure or fun. A hundred times I have been told ‘just give up’ and I want to snap back: ‘Don’t you understand that giving up means that I die?’ But I don’t bother because they wouldn’t understand.”

 

I am always optimistically thinking that something will be done to help right the injustices of my experiences – hoping for remuneration for any small portion of the millions I lost since the accident that would restore some semblance of quality of life, but it NEVER has. My reward for fighting the war is to be able to stay alive so far and to do something constructive with what I have learned, helping many others to avoid the ‘’adventures’ I have had.

 

I wonder how many people are living in similar circumstances, and we don’t know about each other yet? 

The growing piles of documentation...

Frightening facts

Conservatively, 6 million people are involved in auto accidents in the U.S. every year - more than double the number of people annually diagnosed with heart attacks, diabetes and breast cancer combined!

 

According to Collins, accident victims are unaware of actions they must take within certain timeframes and disadvantaged by the many unethical tactics that insurance companies routinely use to evade their obligations and increase profits. There is literally no public awareness of how the insurance and legal “machines” work in this regard, a topic of one of Collins’ upcoming books. It is, she explains, a well-kept secret.  

 

Collins explains it further: There is a public misperception that accident victims win huge settlements for their damages, when this happens less than 1 percent of the time. Our state-required insurance premiums feather the nests (or mansions) of insurance company sales reps and executives, and their defense attorneys win 99 percent of the plaintiff cases that make it to trial – which are few.   

 

The truth is that accident victims are lucky if their car is repaired or replaced and their medical bills covered. Any pre-court settlement over that amount often just pays the commission of their attorney. In most cases, injured persons become stuck dealing with the physical, mental, emotional and financial trauma from their injuries and changed lives by themselves, with virtually no way out. And doctors, lawyers and politicians simply don’t care.

 

Americans without community

Highly productive citizens like Collins are forced to suffer and become a financial burden on their families or society or die when they are too exhausted or discouraged to stay alive. Often, they find themselves isolated, alienated and completely abandoned by their former associates.

 

Collins says: I worked extraordinarily hard my entire life and achieved everything I ever set out to do. My professional and personal purpose in life has always been to help others and initiate solutions and change. I can still help others in need almost every day. Opportunities are everywhere if we just look around.  

 

Who are Americans without community? We need each other to survive. I have learned that we certainly can’t rely on the empty promises of government programs we paid into or insurance plans that greedily suck our money and leave us at our deathbeds.

 

The health care crisis isn’t so complex. Greed is at its core.

 

When your doctor prescribes an antibiotic eye drop costing $180 that insurance doesn’t cover, or the hospital charged $250,000 for the four-day treatment for your heart attack, does it make you feel insane? The truth is that it’s making many Americans bankrupt and homeless.

 

Citizens have to create alternatives to current health care and insurance practices and refuse to pay for no value in return.  We certainly can’t wait for the government to do it for us. 

Rachael Collins in better times...

Partners in public service

Collins is a highly educated entrepreneur, speaker and author who is bright, attractive, articulate, credible and likable. She has been trying for years to tell her story and to fight publicly for the rights of other victims of distracted driving and insurance fraud, but her own desperate circumstances and the resistance of others to get involved or provide assistance and expose the truth have resulted in little attention. 

 

She is trying to prevail for YOU – and for all of us.

 

The Observer is giving Collins the same attention it has provided in its pages for other downtrodden and invisible members (see “Crimes against Humanity,” October 24, 2007; “Flatlined,” June 24, 2009; and “A Mother’s Heartbreak,” Feb. 8, 2008, with links provided below) of a nation on the verge of disintegration and self-destruction to uphold the few remaining tatters of their First Amendment rights in a dying democracy.

 

As part of our nonprofit commitment to service journalism in the public interest, it is our intention that Collins’ testimony will ignite the flames of indignation among readers until media outlets all over the country report on the many aspects of one woman’s story that could easily be experienced by all of us – at any given moment.

 

Collins has created a Web site with more details about her mind-boggling experiences, with pictures and video links at www.insurancefraudtakeslives.webs.com.

Collins has been transcribing the documentation of her ordeal and journey into three books on the topics of insurance fraud (to consumers), how to get the medical care needed in a broken system, and the ever-growing American reality of living homeless. 

 

Watch for Part 2 of this story coming soon including the truth about “Social Insecurity” and “Disabled Disability,” with book excerpts and a video interview with Collins.                                                                                   

                                                        

                                                          Rachael Collins moving in a neck brace after foreclosure...

 

Editor's Epilogue

In the short time I have known Rachael Collins, I have been continually amazed at her selfless concern for others despite her own plight. While her own circumstances would make any person crumble to pieces, Rachael continues to wage on with remarkable and almost superhuman resilience to tell her story for the sake of helping others.

Her passionate commitment to prevent such disaster from occurring to other innocent victims supercedes the fact that she remains in a "medical emergency" that the health care and social service systems continue to ignore. As she fights for her life and her rights, she represents the quintessential battle between good and evil to salvage what remaining shreds of dignity, decency and civil liberty are left in this former civilization on a surefire path toward self-destruction. We commend her for her dedication and fearless stand in speaking truth to power -- for all of us.

 

For more information or to arrange an interview, e-mail Collins at justiceinstitute@yahoo.com

 

COMMENT ON THIS ARTICLE

 

Contact the Observer: E-mail editor@SedonaObserver.com


The Sedona Observer

"Changing America by

Changing Its Media First"

An enlightened society begins with

an enlightened media.

How else will the messages be disseminated?

Click here to learn more about:

WHO we are

WHAT our ethics are

WHEN we got started

WHERE - from Sedona to the world

WHY we do this without pay or profit

HOW to donate to support a free press

 

Click here to view the Observer's home page

 

 

 

 

 


Views and statements expressed here do not necessarily represent the editorial stance of this newspaper. The Sedona Observer abides by media law and upholds the time-honored policies of the Journalism Code of Ethics. It publishes all opinions under the First Amendment and welcomes those with opposing views to submit letters and testimonials.