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Blind member with multiple illnesses talks about challenges

Her experiences improved with Tufts Health One Care.

Kestrell V., was orphaned as a baby and suffered vision loss before going blind as an adult. She also has rheumatoid arthritis, a compromised immune system, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), migraines, fibromyalgia and extreme fatigue.

She spends a lot of time on the phone ordering supplies and getting the services she needs, but she often finds the process overwhelming.

“Just having to call anyone about my health care would set off my PTSD,” she says.

The Tufts Health One Care (Medicare-Medicare) difference

Having Tufts Health One Care, a plan that combines Medicare and MassHealth into one plan, helps simplify her health care. And having a care coordinator makes a real difference. Kestrell describes her first meeting with her care manager.

“She came to my house, and she talked about what Tufts Health One Care could provide, and what was available to me. She was just so great,” she says.

Over time, her care manager became someone she could rely on. “My care manager calls or emails me about every two weeks because I have these ongoing issues that I'm trying to address. I really just learned that I could trust this person. My care manager was someone who was really going to listen and not blame me for my own illness.”

Kestrell explains why she thinks working with a care coordinator or care team is helpful. “You have someone who you can ask questions and who can help you learn about your health care plan. They help facilitate your care or just make your health care services better in some way. I think it’s pretty amazing.”