Healthcare News & Insights

Uninsured woman shoots self in arm to get medical care

Desperate patients may try many things to get relief from nagging injuries. Shooting themselves usually isn’t one of them.

Kathy Myers, of Niles, Michigan, did just that out of desperation. Myers, who is unemployed and has no health insurance, injured her shoulder about a month ago and says she has been living in unbearable pain since.

She had been taking pain medication for it, but without insurance, she said she couldn’t pay for a visit to a specialist and diagnostic tests. She told a local TV station that after being told she could get care for the injury at the local ER only if the injury was “life-threatening or [an] imminent danger.”

Finally, in desperation, she shot herself in the shoulder to make the injury an “imminent danger.”

Myers was treated for the gunshot wound, but not the underlying injury, and released after a few hours. She insisted that she didn’t want to kill herself and would not attempt another shooting.

The local prosecutor is weighing potential criminal charges against Myers for unlawfully discharging a weapon.

Ironically, if sent to prison, Myers might finally get a chance to get that shoulder fixed.

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  1. I am sad to hear she would go thru those measures to receive medical treatment, however she still did not receive treatment for her shoulder. My question is why didn’t she apply for Medicaid? at least she would had some type of treatment rather than nothing at all.

  2. Pay as you can plans should exist for all medical treatments and insurance should not exist at all.
    This is a broken system, and a universal healthcare plan will not fix it.