By NICHOLAS SAKELARIS | CoServ
The Alliance in Reconstructive Surgery Foundation started with a simple question: What’s the biggest missing piece in women’s health care?
For world renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Rod Rohrich, the answer was breast reconstruction after a mastectomy. Federal law requires health insurance companies cover the procedure and talk to women about it. But Rohrich said 70 percent of women don’t know breast reconstruction is an option.
They have no voice.
“The deductibles are high and so are the copays,” Rod said. “Many can’t afford any of this.”
In 2015, Rod joined Janet Denlinger and Morgan Hare to found the Alliance in Reconstructive Surgery Foundation (AiRS), a nonprofit that provides resources to make the surgery an option for women who otherwise couldn’t afford or have access to this type of procedure.
The CoServ Charitable Foundation learned about the work AiRS was doing and jumped on the opportunity to help. On Thursday, CCF contributed $15,000 that will help with outreach, education and advocacy, including T-shirts, name badges and banners. It will also help cover costs not covered by insurance or other financial sources.
“With CoServ’s assistance, it will give us the ability to reach more women who need our services,” said Tara Null, executive director of AiRS. “Through the CoServ grant, we’re able to produce our application and our brochures in Spanish.”
This is the first time CCF has contributed to this organization.
“We are so pleased and honored to have CoServ give us this incredible grant of $15,000,” Rod said.
The funds came from CCF’s General Fund, which uses proceeds from Employee payroll deductions and company fundraisers. Unlike Operation Roundup funds, General Fund grants are not restricted to organizations within CoServ's service territory.
“On behalf of the women who will be helped by this grant, thank you,” Morgan said.
The Alliance in Reconstructive Surgery Foundation has helped 68 women receive breast reconstructive procedures since 2016. Nearly 200 women have contacted the organization seeking financial assistance. They contributed $63,286 toward reconstructive procedures for patients in 2019. Another $90,200 in reconstructive procedures have ben approved through the end of 2019.
The CoServ Charitable Foundation (CCF) focuses on providing basic human needs, promoting community vitality and supporting education. Since CCF was established in 2004, more than $12 million has been distributed to worthy causes across North Texas. Funding for most of the grants comes from CoServ customers through Operation Roundup® – a program where customers “round up” their monthly utility bill to the nearest dollar. For more information about CCF, please visit CoServ.com/CCF.