United Way and Lakeland Volunteers in Medicine are changing lives
Peggy is a creative person who loves to sew and craft, especially with her grandchildren. She is also a dedicated precinct clerk with the Polk County Supervisor of Elections. She adores giving back, a life skill she learned from her dad who raised her to believe that helping others was important.
But in 2004, Peggy collapsed suddenly and was taken to the Cardiac Care Unit at Lakeland Regional Health. There she learned that she was born with a serious heart condition and had lived her entire life with this condition undiagnosed. Following her collapse, she had major heart surgery and now has a pacemaker.
“Two years ago I couldn’t drive a car,” Peggy said. “I couldn’t sew or do crafts, I couldn’t take care of myself or my family. l was so sick that I had to give up doing what I love. We couldn’t afford health insurance and we couldn’t get Medicaid.”
A resident of Ft. Meade, Peggy had reached out to Lakeland Volunteers in Medicine many years ago to try and qualify for medical care. Unfortunately, LVIM was limited to serving residents of Lakeland at the time. Now, however, as a result of LVIM’s growth and dedicated volunteer force, LVIM can serve residents throughout Polk County. Peggy said she was delighted the learn she now qualified for assistance.
Peggy lives with several chronic conditions like COPD, hypertension and congestive heart failure. The Chronic Disease Management Program and the Pharmacy Program, both supported by United Way of Central Florida, have helped Peggy’s health dramatically improve.
When Peggy came to LVIM, she was on 29 different medications. Through the high-quality healthcare she receives at LVIM, her medication regiment has decreased significantly to just nine and Peggy is now able to drive and work again.
Peggy has found a medical home to help her manage her health and received life-saving treatment.
“Dr. Chapman and the staff and volunteers at LVIM have gone above and beyond to get me the medical care I need,” Peggy said. “LVIM helps people who need it.”