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Story Collective

Now is your chance to tell your own story about how you use Medicaid to keep you and your family healthy.

James Boyd

James Boyd

James sat quietly in the main room of the Boys Girls and Adults Community Development Center in Marvell waiting for his sister to return so that he could be interviewed for the Medicaid Story Collective.  James’ sister serves as his eyes while he serves as her ears in that she is hard of hearing. 

James was living in Springfield, Missouri and working installing elevators.  Life was good until James noticed that his eyesight was starting to fail.  His vision became blurry, and he was unable to see clearly.  James was diagnosed with Glaucoma and Cataracts.  He was unable to perform his duties as an elevator installer.  Unable to perform his work as an elevator installer and to manage at home alone, his niece came to Springfield to bring him back to Arkansas. Doctors have advised James that there is nothing they can do to improve his sight.  Removing the Cataracts will not prevent him from losing his sight completely. He has accepted this and manages his daily life the best that he can 

James started receiving Medicaid more than two years ago.  He uses his Medicaid to see his primary care physician and an Optometrist in Helena.  He has not seen an Ophthalmologist lately.   

When asked if he has someone to assist him in his home, he stated that he does not.  James says that he does not trust people because he has been taken advantage of by people who have pretended to be his friend.  He feels that he cannot trust having someone come into his home to assist him.  Those that he did trust stole from him. 

His sister aids him in any way that she can.  Since she is hard of hearing and he is almost completely blind, they provide each other with the sensory receptors that the other lacks.  They move as a team, the one who sees the path and the one who hears the danger that may be on the path.  Together they work to prevent harm from coming to either. 

When told that he would be receiving a Walmart Gift Card for his time in giving this story.  James asked if he could use his gift card to purchase dog food for his dog.  He says that his dog is the only living being that he trusts other than his sister and wants to make sure that his dog receives additional food for his loyalty.  His dog is his ears and eyes when his sister is not around.  One cannot help but admire his compassion for his “furry friend and companion”. 

James feels that his condition would probably be worse if he did not have Medicaid.  Medicaid will not bring his sight back, but it certainly will help him to keep his medical conditions under control by allowing him to see a doctor when needed.  Without Medicaid, he would not be able to afford his medications or go to the doctor.  Life is not wonderful, but having Medicaid helps to make it better. 


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