TMA fund supports medical families in crisis
By Tammy Wishard
A dedicated physician finds himself struggling with dementia in his later years, with his wife by his side caring for him. To provide needed income, the Johnsons (not their real name) sell their home and relocate to their smaller vacation residence in another part of the state, leaving behind lifelong friends.
Funds dwindle as the couple makes needed accessibility updates to the home and pays for health insurance. As the days and months pass, and with no support from family, the wife begins to wear down from her role as caretaker. She needs a break. Mrs. Johnson reaches out to TMA’s Physicians Benevolent Fund (PBF) for assistance, and PBF fills the need, providing funding for respite care so she can have a few hours each week to tend to her needs.
This story is one of hundreds from PBF’s 60-year history, such as the widow left to support herself and her young children, a physician who became disabled and is unable to practice as a result of a stroke, and a physician’s spouse left with tremendous debt after his wife’s death.
PBF fills the gap for physicians and their immediate families when they find themselves in desperate financial crisis and unable to meet their day-to-day needs. Recipients receive monthly help to pay for personal necessities like rent or mortgage, utilities, health insurance, medical bills, clothing, and food.
If you know a physician or a physician’s family who could benefit, please direct them to the PBF webpage for qualification details and the confidential questionnaire. Or contact Chris.Johnson@texmed.org, PBF director. TMA strives to protect the anonymity of fund recipients. If you’d like to help sustain the funds to support physicians in need, contribute via secure, online donation, or send a check to The Physicians Benevolent Fund, Attn: TMA Finance Department, 401 W. 15th St., Austin, TX 78701-1680. Contributions are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law and may be in the form of honoraria or memorials.