The moment Rodney Kamberg found out that he had colon cancer his world came to a crashing halt.
"When I started bleeding internally, I went to the doctor and within 48 hours I was diagnosed with colon cancer," says Kamberg, who lives in Santa Cruz. "I was told I had approximately 30 days to live, and if I didn't have surgery then I wasn't going to make it."
"I was in a panic because I had no health insurance," added Kamberg, who worked part time in construction with his brother. "I started jumping through all the hoops for financial assistance, but because I had the 30 days on my mind... oh my gosh let's get the ball rolling. I needed to start the necessary procedures."
"It was imperative for me to let Rodney know not to worry about the financial end of it," says Lisa Stow, surgical case manager, Santa Cruz Medical Foundation. "This was a time for him to heal."
Through its generous charity care program, Sutter Santa Cruz covered Kamberg's medical bills, which reached about $75,000.
"I didn't have to think about my wallet. I didn't' have to think of where I'm going to be when this is all over," says Rodney.
"When someone finds their way into our Sutter Health system, we make sure that they're provided with the same outstanding quality of care whether they have the best insurance program or no personal ability to pay," says Jim Gray, chair, Sutter Health Board of Directors.
"Thank you is not enough, it's just not enough. There's got to be a bigger word," says Kamberg.
- Rodney Kemberg