I don't have insurance or money to pay for services. Can I still get services through the WVU Positive Health Clinic?
Yes, you can still obtain services. There are a few steps you must take in order to receive financial assistance. You will be required to complete some paperwork including a Ryan White Part C or D eligibility application and a financial application from University Health Associates (UHA)/West Virginia University Hospitals (WVUH). In addition to the applications, patients are asked to submit pay stubs, bank account statements, tax returns, a Medicaid denial and a prescription drug list as applicable. Currently, UHA/WVUH can assist patients making up to 200% of the current poverty level. Ryan White Part C or D can also assist as a payor of last resort for patients at any income level. A patient may be required to pay some medical bills that relate to their HIV/AIDS care out of their own pocket before Ryan White will assist. The amount to be paid out of pocket depends on the patient's income. See the program director or financial counselor today to find out your eligibility for financial assistance.
I don't have insurance. Can I get the medications I need?
Usually there are ways to obtain assistance for medications. The following are things you can do; apply for Medicaid at your local Department of Health and Human Resources (referred to as the DHHR or "Welfare office") fill out an AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) application, contact your local HIV Ryan White Part B case manager (i.e. Jay Adams), enroll in a patient assistance program through the individual drug companies, and apply for Ryan White Part C or D assistance.
What if I am sick and the clinic is closed?
If you are experiencing a medical or psychiatric emergency, call 911 immediately or go to your nearest hospital emergency room. If you are not feeling well, but not experiencing a medical emergency, you can call the WVU Health Line at 1-800-982-8242.
I'm HIV positive. Am I eligible for a disability check and/or Medicaid?
Having HIV alone does not qualify a person for disability. It depends on whether the individual has been sick due to HIV and if the individual has had difficulty working due to physical health or mental health problems. You can contact your local social security office or 1-800-772-1213 to obtain information on whether or not to apply for benefits.
How is my medical information kept confidential?
All staff of the Positive Health Clinic, University Health Associates, and West Virginia University Hospitals are required to follow the guidelines of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA. This act is a federal policy that sets standards for privacy, security, and electronic transmission of health care information. The confidentiality of your health information is monitored closely. There are certain instances where your health information can be released without your consent including when it is ordered by a federal, state, or local law or when reporting is needed for public health and safety. These instances and others are listed in the Notice of Privacy Practices booklet that you receive at your appointment. If you are ever concerned that your privacy has been violated you may make a complaint by calling; West Virginia University Hospital, Inc. Compliance Department at 1-877-298-4376
What is a Ryan White Grant and who was Ryan White?
The Ryan White grants are federal grants awarded through the Ryan White Care Act. The Care Act was signed into law on August 15, 1990. The purpose of the Care Act is to improve the quality and availability of care for people with HIV/AIDS and their families. The Care Act was amended and reauthorized in May 1996 and named after Ryan White. Ryan White was an Indiana teenager who became a public educator for HIV/AIDS after he became infected with HIV. He died the same year the legislation was passed (www.hrsa.com).
Who can medical staff talk to about medical care when the patient is not available?
You need to sign a release of information in the clinic or give verbal permission for the medical staff to talk to anyone other than yourself about your medical care. The release of information can specify what information can be released to this person. If you have a Medical Power of Attorney and a doctor determines that you do not have capacity to make medical decisions your medical information could be shared with your Medical Power of Attorney. In a situation where you do not have capacity to make medical decisions, and have not completed a Medical Power of Attorney a Health Care Surrogate may be appointed by your doctor to make medical decisions for you. A Health Care Surrogate is appointed through a checklist that identifies potential surrogates including, a guardian, a spouse, a child, parents, siblings, grandchildren, a close friend or the state. Careful consideration is given to determine the best person to make decisions and a court order can be obtained if there are any objections.