Tuesday • July 23
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The Malformation of Health Care
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What would you do if your medication cost $7,861.00 a month? Where would you turn if your insurance company stopped paying your doctor in the middle of your lifesaving treatment? Would it make a difference if you weren't yet thirty years old?

One percent of the human population is born with an arteriovenous malformation (AVM). Seventy-two thousand young adults in the United States are diagnosed with cancer every year. Countless patients are forced to fight with their insurance providers to receive the care their doctors prescribe.

Welcome to the world of Erin Havel, who was born with an AVM, began having prescribed treatment, and halfway through those treatments was denied coverage by her insurance provider.

Episode Segments:
The Business of Medicine: Author Erin Havel

Erin Havel is a writer, activist, and young adult cancer and AVM survivor. Her book The Malformation of Health Care tackles young adult struggles, battling chronic illness and insurance companies.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Erin Havel
Born and raised in Naperville, IL. Erin Havel spent her early years listening to the vivid stories of her grandmother, and learning about music, writing, and advocacy. She attended Saint Mary's University in Winona, MN where she studied musical theatre performance. After graduation she was employed with a touring theatre group. When the tour came to an end, Erin returned to the Chicagoland area to work in corporate America. During her time in an office building, Erin continued to write, act and perform. She also completed her masters degree in education. In 2004 she began treatment on an AVM (Arteriovenous malformation), and in 2007 she was diagnosed with CML (Chronic myelogenous (or myeloid) leukemia). During this time she went through tremendous struggle with different health insurance companies and became an unexpected advocate for change in the American health care system. Erin was nominated for a 2013 Seattle Mayors Art's Award regarding social justice for her book The Malformation of Health Care. She was also honored with the 2013 Profiles in Courage award. Currently, Erin is living in Seattle, Washington working on her writing, speaking at events when requested, and embracing her role as an advocate for positive effective change.

Erin's Website