PHOENIX – Caitlin Secrist, a 21-year-old college student blocked from lifesaving surgery because she can't get copies of her medical records, will receive the file after Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and a judge intervened Wednesday.
Secrist can't eat, can't work, delayed her college graduation and is in constant pain because of acute pancreatitis. She wears a feeding tube around the clock and depends on handfuls of medications. More than a dozen hospitalizations later, the next pancreatitic attack could kill her.
All conventional treatments have failed. Secrist hopes a drastic surgery to completely remove her pancreas, spleen and appendix could help.
But a top doctor at Johns Hopkins Hospital refuses to perform the operation without a complete understanding of Secrist's health history, including what her organs looked like when she was originally diagnosed, she said. Without the first scans taken in 2017, Secrist can't move forward.
Secrist is among more than 300 patients who have tried and failed to get their medical records since Florence Hospital at Anthem and Gilbert Hospital went bankrupt and closed last summer, The Arizona Republicreported. Creditors have been bickering since then over who should cover the $92,000 needed to access the repossessed electronic-records system.