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Eileen & Janet G.

Family & Caregiver

I'm nominating my two older sisters, Eileen and Janet Galarza, who live in Puerto Rico and have been taking care of our mother, Carmen, and have been the strongest advocates they could be in Puerto Rico. When our mother suffered a stroke on May 5, 2010, my sisters immediately sprang to action making sure that the hospital and her HMO/Medicare provided the treatment and care she needed and deserved. Given the limited personnel and medical equipment in Puerto Rico to treat stroke victims, and a penny pinching HMO, this wasn't an easy task, but my sisters quickly became near-experts in our mother's condition, sought help from every contact that they knew and encouraged me to also reach out to contacts in the US. That allowed us to also have the Regional Director of the US Dept. of Health and Human Services as an important and powerful ally in her care.

Our mother is making a lot of progress, and yet we know the road ahead is long and difficult at times. I know that my two older sisters will continue to fight for our mother the way she's always fought for us, and I am extremely proud of them and know that they can serve as an example to millions of Latinos who find themselves in similar situations. 


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