Queen Creek mom hopes to get robotic arm to help her live with Spinal Muscular Atrophy
QUEEN CREEK, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Karole MacFarlane considers herself extremely lucky to have the tools she has, but as her genetic disease progresses, she is living with more and more limitations. She says her saving grace is a $56,000 robotic arm.
“Basically what happens is you lose muscle strength and you get weaker, and weaker, and weaker as time goes on,” said MacFarlane.
It’s left her unable to use her arms and legs. “It’s very frustrating because at one point I could do a lot. I couldn’t do everything that you do, but I mean I could stand and use my arms. For everything that I need, I need help. The only things I can control on my own are my iPad and my phone,” MacFarlane said.
She uses her iPad, phone and wheelchair to get around and communicate, but she believes a JACO robotic arm could drastically improve her ability to be independent. “I could get myself a drink of water, I can’t do that now. I can’t feed myself now. I could pick things up off the floor. I could open the door. It’s endless the things that I could do,” she said.
She came across it at a Phoenix disability conference, but her insurance provider has repeatedly denied her coverage, saying her claim failed to show how much she needs it. “It’s just very humiliating to have to beg for everything,” MacFarlane said.
That’s why she has turned to her community, who are hoping to be a part of bringing this expensive device into reach. “It would mean freedom, and I would feel like a lot less of a burden. Every little thing I need, I have to ask for help.”
National medical fundraising nonprofit Help Hope Live is looking to help. Donations can be made here. An upcoming online scavenger hunt fundraiser until September 16 provides a fun and unique way to get involved in Karole’s fundraising efforts. Click/tap here to find details and sign up.
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