Posted on April 10, 2011 · Posted in TBI Voices
This entry is part 2 of 14 in the series Gina

Waking Up From a Coma: Gina Part Two

On a Friday, the doctors at Theda Clark are talking about doing brain surgery on Monday. But by that Monday, because of her emergence from the coma, her health insurance company is demanding a transfer of Gina to a hospital within the “group”. While the waking up from a coma was good news, it wasn’t a miracle and certainly not sufficient basis to yank her out of one hospital’s ICU, to get her back into “group”.

Gina’s husband tells about her first hours of waking up from a coma:

That was the first time that I was with her that our son was with as well, and it was kind of incredible because she did remember both of our names and that kind of was an exciting moment.

She was able to speak but her voice didn’t sound normal. She wasn’t making sense. Her husband continues:

She was very disorientated and didn’t really know where she was; didn’t make any sense at all.

The next week was pretty terrible, actually. After she became responsive, I had a big battle with the insurance company because she was at a hospital that wasn’t covered under our insurance. They told me we had 24 hours to get her out of that hospital.

Unfortunately, they weren’t going to pay for an ambulance to transport her, so I had to make arrangements and we actually took her out of that hospital and transported her. Her father drove the car and I was in the back of the van with her because the insurance company wouldn’t pay to transport her.

What insurance company was that?


What were her doctors at Theda Clark saying about moving her at that point after just waking up from a coma?

They understood the fact that the insurance coverage wasn’t going to cover their facility. So, I actually talked to the doctors there and we had a couple choices as far as which hospitals to go to. It was either St. Vincent or Aurora that our insurance would cover, and I talked to the doctors and tried to make a decision where we were going to go.

Her waking up from a coma is how many days after she had a skull fracture and brain surgery ?

I want to say probably nine or ten.

So, nine or ten days after she was so severely hurt that they had to fly her by helicopter to Theda Clark, Humana insisted that she be pulled out of that hospital, transported through a civilian vehicle and taken to a different hospital after waking up from a coma?


Do you think that was safe for her?

No, it wasn’t, and quite honestly when the whole situation was happening with Humana being their corporate offices only being a few miles from my house, I actually drove down there and I was irate. I parked my car right on their sidewalk and walked right in there and demanded to talk to somebody. I practically got thrown in jail that day.

Did you have to drive by Humana’s headquarters with your wife in the car when you had to transport her?

Yes, we did. I drive by it almost every day now and I still look at the place and I can’t stand Humana. They are (still our insurance company) only for the fact that they almost have us as a hostage, because she is not insurable anyplace else.

Next in Part Three – A Tough Time In Green Bay

About the Author

Attorney Gordon S. Johnson, Jr.
Past Chair Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group, American Association of Justice :: 800-992-9447