In addition to financial contributions, more about we need your help to get the word out about Rachel’s condition and to break down bureaucratic barriers standing in the way of her life-saving treatment.
Get Rachel’s Story to Ellen DeGeneres!
We need your help to get Rachel Phillips’ story to Ellen DeGeneres to see if we can get her to donate some money for the surgery and aftercare and help get the story out to a wider audience. Click through for instructions on how to submit Rachel’s story, website complete with everything you need such as a picture and text. By following these instructions explicitly, we can make a big impact by getting the same information in front of them consistently.
Because her life-saving treatment is not approved by United States government, it cannot be done in the United States. Rachel will need to travel to Sweden to have the procedure performed. We have checked on private “mercy” flights and the lowest quote we were given was still over $80,000! She cannot fly on a commercial flight because she needs to be on a ventilator with medical attention so her airways won’t collapse with cabin pressure changes.
We have been trying to get an exception granted to allow Rachel to be transported to Sweden for the transplant surgery using a military medical flight. The military makes medical flights almost every day to military hospitals in Germany, and we can get a transport to Sweden by land once we are there.
Rachel’s husband Steven has contacted the former mayor of his hometown, who is a personal friend of Senator Dick Durbin. The mayor, Chuck Sholtz, is going to do everything he can to see if he can get Durbin to get with our Vermont Senators to encourage them to help us out.
Please call either or both Senator Patrick Leahy’s office and Senator Dick Durbin’s office asking them to please help Rachel Phillips get an exception granted for her to be transported to Europe on a military medical flight. If you call anytime on the weekend you will get the answering machine Senator Leahy’s office and can just leave a brief, nice message. Senator Dick Durbin’s office doesn’t record phone calls on the weekends, but they will take emails. Here is the contact information:
Senator Patrick Leahy: 802-863-2525 or 800-642-3193
Senator Dick Durbin: 202-224-2152
We would be grateful if you would ask for their help in getting Rachel space on a military medical flight to Europe to get the transplant she can’t get yet in the United States but that she needs to save her life.
WE REALLY NEED PEOPLE TO HELP US WITH THIS! It is the only way we know to get this pushed up the ladder past the “middle man” so the senators actually see Rachel’s case. Rachel will be hospitalized next week and we could see the timetable start to speed up after her scheduled tracheostomy. That is why your help is urgently needed at this time.
Spread Rachel’s Compelling Story
Due to the massive medical and related expenses anticipated for the trachea transplant on top of the already mounting bills, it is imperative that we spread Rachel’s story as far and wide as possible. We ask that you read Rachel’s compelling story here and pass it along to as many media organizations as you can. There are a variety of angles suggested in that story that might be used to pitch the story to media outlets based on local interest (locations where Rachel has lived and danced) subject area interest (dance, service dogs), and so on.