Amanda’s Story

Amanda lives with severe depression and anxiety, along with other disorders that have caused significant changes in her cognitive functioning. Because of these changes, she lost her job. In order to pay for insurance and living expenses, she depleted her savings and 401K plan. Then she lost her private health insurance. To pay her medical bills, Amanda used the equity in her house. Eventually, she owed more on the house than it was worth. The house that was once paid off was nearing foreclosure.

Amanda turned to Mental Health Minnesota for help. She had strong reservations about contacting county social services, doctors, or other agencies, because she feared that those agencies might take away her independence. When she sought help previously, she faced placement in a group home or under guardianship. She knew she could continue to live independently with enough support.

Amanda and her advocate discussed several resources and supports and drafted a prioritized list of tasks. With her advocate’s help, Amanda applied for General Assistance Medical Care (GAMC) to cover some medical expenses until she was approved for Medical Assistance (MA). The advocate also helped Amanda utilize foreclosure prevention strategies to keep her house and made a referral for a lawyer to help Amanda apply for Social Security benefits. Finally, the advocate provided a letter of support for disability benefits.

Eventually, Amanda was approved for benefits, including back payment from Social Security. With the newly obtained financial safety net and MA, she was able to prevent the loss of her home and focus on treatments for her mental health conditions. Amanda’s future goal is to help others who find themselves in similar situations.