Member Story: Mark Hinkley

February 13th, 2020

 

Liberty HealthShare member Mark Hinkley has always been healthy, but that all changed two years ago when he faced an unexpected diagnosis. It was December 2018 when Mark noticed that he was having trouble moving his right leg and right arm. Not very concerned, Mark continued to work and made an appointment to see his doctor. 

On Christmas day, Mark found out that he had a protrusion pushing onto his spinal cord. His doctor didn’t know if the protrusion had caused permanent damage to his spinal cord.

In 2019, he had spine surgery and finally could move his arm and leg, and was able to write again. He was beginning to feel better. However, this wouldn’t last for long. 

“Things were going well, but five days after surgery, I was having a hard time breathing and I was rushed to the E.R.,” Mark said. “They found out that I had a blood clot, a double saddle pulmonary embolism, the size of a baseball in my lungs. I was in ICU for nine days, until they dissolved the blood clot and released me.”

While recovering, Mark had one more unexpected medical event and needed another surgery, this time on his left knee.

“My left knee just wore out, bone-on-bone from active use over the years,” Mark said. “It was not a problem one day, and the next day it was horrible pain. And my right knee is fine.”

The surgery went well, but recovery has been longer – and more painful – than Mark expected. However, he is back at work and walking about 10,000 steps every day.

“I still have seven sessions of PT (physical therapy) to do, and they say I am doing great!”

Mark had survived the most difficult year of his life, but once the medical bills started coming in, he began to worry. His wife, a nurse, was skeptical that his medical expenses would be paid. 

After talking to Tom, a Liberty HealthShare provider relations advocate, Mark realized that his bills would be taken care of. 

“If I had an issue, Tom would take care of it. He was there for me during my surgery and he did everything to help me.”

Mark’s wife is a believer in Liberty HealthShare now. 

“If I could say anything to other Liberty HealthShare members, it would be to hang in there,” Mark said. “Liberty HealthShare has been unbelievable for me. When I’ve called in, people have been nothing but kind. My experience has been terrific.” 

After all he's been through the past two years, Mark says that he is thankful for Liberty HealthShare and believes that God allowed him to make it through the hardest year of life for a reason. 

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