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Midstate woman denied coverage after being told ACA would cover - abc27 WHTM

Midstate woman denied coverage after being told ACA would cover treatment

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CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) -

Mary Parks, 34, is well-known in the Carlisle community and is often seen sitting in the Courthouse Commons coffee shop on South Hanover Street.

So, when those in the community heard what happened to her they wanted to help.

"I was extremely irate," said Karen Rhody, owner Courthouse Commons.

"Everybody loves Mary, except her insurance company," said Pat LaMarche

Mary's story has gained international attention after an article titled "Obamacare Promised to Save Her Life; Her Insurance Company Has Other Ideas," ran in the Huffington Post. The article was written by Mary's friend, Pat LaMarche.

"Tens of thousands of people have read it now," said LeMarche.

In the article LeMarche explains that Mary was born in poverty to a middle-aged single woman and she grew up in a tough, inner city Philadelphia neighborhood. She goes on to say Mary has no family and was also homeless at one time.

LeMarche says Mary is struggling with binge eating and at 500 pounds was eating her self to death. When Obamacare took effect, Mary could no longer be denied insurance because of her prior condition. The community helped her buy insurance and she agreed to get treatment

"I was sitting in the office when the insurance company told her it was covered. I would not have driven her to Florida if it was not, " said LeMarche.

After driving her friend 1,200 miles to the Florida facility to start treatment, the insurance company backed out.

"They said she is not a danger to herself or anyone else so she does not need a 24 hour facility," said LaMarche.

When her friends back at home heard the news that Mary may have to return home they were devastated.

"I just do not understand, with the new Obamacare how in the world did this happen. The pre existing conditions are supposed to be covered and I just feel like this is a loophole," said Rhody.

LaMarche would not reveal the name of the insurance company involved.

"This insurance company, I believe, does not want you to know what bad guys they are because they want to sell insurance. I will tell you one thing, they are one of the insurance companies Governor Corbett is discussing running Pennsylvania's plan, so no thank you we do not want Pennsylvanians treated this way," said LeMarche.

The community has started a fundraiser to help Mary continue her treatment in Florida

"I hope we raise as much as she needs to get the help she needs, whatever that dollar amount may be," said Rhody

Donations are being collected at Courthouse Commons on South Hanover Street in Carlisle and also at F&M Trust. You can deposit money at any F&M branch by making the check out to Engage Community Church and Memo: Mary Parks.

You can also donate online, here: http://www.gofundme.com/HalfMySize

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