+
upworthy
Most Shared

One thing survivors of the Pulse shooting won't have to worry about: medical bills.

Local hospitals are doing the right thing.

On June 12, 2016, 20-year-old Patience Carter was shot in both legs during the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando.

The Philadelphia-area woman was on vacation with friends when they decided to visit the popular gay nightclub. One of her friends, Akyra Murray, was killed in the attack. The other, Tiara Parker, survived a gunshot wound to the stomach.

Patience Carter is overcome with emotion after speaking to the media from Florida Hospital. Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.


Like many of the Pulse shooting survivors, Carter faced a long and painful recovery. Additionally, she faced mounting medical bills.

More than 50 people were wounded during the attack that claimed the lives of 49. Carter was taken to Florida Hospital along with 11 others.

The average medical costs for a gunshot victim come in somewhere around $20,000. As a student, it's not like Carter just happens to have tens of thousands of dollars in disposable income laying around.

I guess some people didn't see this post on my Facebook when I posted it a few days ago, so here it is. Truth As long as God knows the truth, as long as the other survivors know the truth, as long as the surgeons, and nurses who helped save a countless number of lives know the truth, as long as the police officers who risked their lives to save ours know the truth, As long as the majority of the world that sends their love and support knows the truth, As long as the strong members of the LGBT community know the truth, As long as I know the truth... I can find some peace to heal, I can find some peace to learn how to walk again, I can find some peace to want to live on, Laying here in my bed, bullet holes in my legs the size of nickels, As numerous people spin my words, the media can be very insensitive, and fickled I'm a real person, Tiara Parker and Akyra Murray are real people, and this pain is real, We all laid on that cold bathroom floor together, and the people that suffered through the hours with us, know how we feel. #OurPainIsReal #Pray4Orlando

A photo posted by Patience Carter (@patiencecarter) on

In a major act of generosity (and great news), local hospitals have announced that they won't be billing victims of the shooting.

Both Orlando Health health care network and Florida Hospital have indicated that they will not look to Pulse survivors for reimbursement. Even better, this includes follow-up care as well.

Hospital staff listen as Patience Carter speaks to the media. Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

"Orlando Health has not sent any hospital or medical bills directly to Pulse patients, and we don’t intend to pursue reimbursement of medical costs from them," Orlando Health told ABC News.

Between what Orlando Health can gather in the form of state and federal funding, insurance, charitable donations, and more, the organization hopes to offset some of its own costs — which, over the course of survivors' lifetimes, could go well into multimillions of dollars.

As seen in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings, the price of surviving a terrorist attack can be pretty steep.

In 2013, more than 260 people were injured in a bombing attack near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. More than $30 million was donated to funds meant to help victims. Still, for many, it's not enough, resulting in a lifetime of debt not covered by insurance or crowdfunding.

Generosity and kindness are wonderful things. It's just worth remembering that when considering the holes in our current health care system. Without generosity and kindness, people in need can get swallowed up in medical bills through no fault of their own. It's adding insult to literal injury.

Boston Marathon bombing victim Erika Brannock arrives at the sentencing of accused bomber Dzhokar Tsarnaev. Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images.

In the case of the survivors of the Pulse shooting and in Carter's case, the medical bill situation has worked out for the best, thanks to the generosity and compassion of two health care organizations.

Even so, we should all keep pushing for a health care system in which we don't have to rely on hospitals or strangers for help.

Health care really is a right. We need to start thinking of it that way.

Pop Culture

Two brothers Irish stepdancing to Beyoncé's country hit 'Texas Hold 'Em' is pure delight

The Gardiner Brothers and Queen Bey proving that music can unite us all.

Gardiner Brothers/TikTok (with permission)

The Gardiner Brothers stepping in time to Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em."

In early February 2024, Beyoncé rocked the music world by releasing a surprise new album of country tunes. The album, Renaissance: Act II, includes a song called "Texas Hold 'Em," which shot up the country charts—with a few bumps along the way—and landed Queen Bey at the No.1 spot.

As the first Black female artist to have a song hit No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts, Beyoncé once again proved her popularity, versatility and ability to break barriers without missing a beat. In one fell swoop, she got people who had zero interest in country music to give it a second look, forced country music fans to broaden their own ideas about what country music looks like and prompted conversations about bending and blending musical genres and styles.

And she inspired the Gardiner Brothers to add yet another element to the mix—Irish stepdance.

Keep ReadingShow less

Kevin Bacon's farm songs have become a social media favorite.

When Beyoncé dropped two songs from her upcoming album of country tunes, Renaissance: Act II, she may not have expected to make history, but that's exactly what happened. Her first single from the album, "Texas Hold 'Em," shot to the No.1 spot on the Billboard country music charts, making her the first Black female artist to hit that top spot. The catchy tune also topped the Billboard Hot 100 the last week in February 2024, a week after it debuted at No. 2.

Presumbaly, Queen Bey didn't expect her song to become an Irish stepdance hit, though that's also exactly what happened. And surely she didn't expect it to be sung by Kevin Bacon to a bunch of farm animals, yet that also has happened.

Perhaps we should all have expected that, though. There's a precedent here, after all.

Keep ReadingShow less
Photos by Daniela on Unsplash (left) and Rens D on Unsplash (right)

Peeling garlic is notoriously challenging.

If you ever cook with fresh garlic, you know what a challenge it can be to remove the cloves from the skin cleanly, especially if you're starting with a full head.

There are various methods people use to peel garlic, with varying levels of success. Doing it by hand works, but will leave you with garlic-smelling fingertips for the better part of a day. Whacking the head on the counter helps separate the cloves from each other, but doesn't help much with removing the skin.

Some people swear by vigorously shaking the skinned cloves around in a covered bowl or jarred lid, which can be surprisingly effective. Some smash the clove with the flat side of a knife to loosen it and then pull it off. Others utilize a rubber roller to de-skin the cloves.

But none of these methods come close to the satisfaction of watching someone perfectly peeling an entire head of garlic with a pair of tongs.

Keep ReadingShow less

Teen with size 23 feet receives new shoes from Shaq

Any adult responsible for raising a teen will tell you that not only do teens eat a lot and sleep nearly as much as they did as infants, they also grow quickly. Sometimes it feels like their growth spurts are literally happening overnight. You go to sleep with a squeaky voiced teenager that's still shorter than you only to wake up to what appears to be a fully grown man wearing your child's clothes.

It's no wonder that parents can have a hard time keeping up with the ever changing clothes and shoe sizes that come with a growing teen. But Tamika Neal's son has surpassed what would be considered the average height and weight of a 16-year-old, which means he's also outgrown sizes carried in the stores.

According to Cincinnati Children's Hospital, boys aged 16 are typically between 5-foot-3 and 6-foot, weighing between 104 to 180 pounds. Jor'el Bolden is a towering 6-foot-5 and 380 pounds with a size 23 shoe.

Keep ReadingShow less
via Erin Bailey Law (used with permission) and Monstera Production/Pexels

Erin Bailey has taken a hard stand on sleepovers.

A mother who’s a criminal defense attorney is going viral on TikTok for a hard stance she has taken on her children going to sleepovers. For Erin Bailey of South Carolina, the answer is a big no. The reason? There are too many variables that could make her children vulnerable to sexual assault.

Bailey has a practice in Georgetown and is ranked among the Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyers in South Carolina by the National Trial Lawyers.

"I don’t allow my children to go to sleepovers. I’m a criminal attorney and here’s why,” she opens the video. “First and primary is the S.A. [sexual assault] risk. While you may feel like you know the parents who are hosting the sleepover really well, and you know and love and trust them, that's exactly who's committing S.A.”

Keep ReadingShow less
Harold Krichel, Wikipedia/Representative Image from Canva

Anne Hathaway hilariously tries to sit in a tight latex dress during Fashion Week in Milan

Anne Hathaway might have played fashion-oblivious Andrea Sachs in “Devil Wears Prada,” but nowadays, in real life (or at least on the red carpet) she’s more on the level of Miranda Priestley—turning heads at every event with showstopping looks.

However, no matter how high her status as a fashion icon rises, the “Princess Diaries” actress still holds onto her humility.

Case and point: she has no problem sharing what it’s really like to wear certain designer dresses. Spoiler alert: it’s not quite as effortless as the fashionistas make it look.

Keep ReadingShow less