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Deborah Jankowski’s Fight for Justice in Healthcare

Deborah Jankowski, the CEO and Founder of the CRPS Warriors Foundation and a warrior in her own right, as she has been battling Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) for nine long years, has dedicated herself to advocating for those suffering from CRPS. Her journey, marked by pain and perseverance, mirrors the struggles faced by many who find themselves at the mercy of a healthcare system that can, at times, seem as draining as the illnesses they seek to treat.

Deborah Jankowski’s Fight for Justice in Healthcare

Deb’s nightmare began when she was hospitalized on November 2023,  Instead of healing, it became a experience that would leave her traumatized. She was let down by the very individuals entrusted with her care.

Dr. Jin, a doctor who was not even authorized to serve as Deb’s physician, became the embodiment of carelessness and insensitivity instead of being a source of reassurance and care. He showed up to her room, downplaying the severity of her condition and dismissing her concerns, his unprofessional conduct, and his apparent lack of empathy turned what should have been a healing environment into a traumatic event. Dr. Jin had insisted on involving Risk Management when there was in fact no need for risk management to be involved and despite objections from Deb herself. He belittled her in front of her loved ones, adding emotional distress to a woman who simply wanted to be treated.

Due to the lack of compassion and attentiveness, an infection found its way into her body, aggressively spreading to her lungs. The consequences of Dr. Jin’s actions proved to be severe. Deb, already battling with CRPS, found her condition worsened as she had a flare-up which was a direct result of the delayed and inadequate care she received. It set her back significantly.

Even after being transferred to a better facility, thanks to her personal doctor’s intervention, Dr. Jin proceeded to stalk her by showing up at her new facility, TWICE. His unexpected and unwelcome appearance at her new hospital was a clear breach of boundaries. Luckily, her care team took action and fired the nurse responsible for letting him have access to her.

For Deb, the hospital that is supposed to be a place of healing, has become a symbol of fear and trauma, to the extent that even the mere sight of a medical facility triggers waves of anxiety. Her medical appointments are now online, as it was the only way for her to continue her treatment while keeping the anxiety attacks at bay.

Her story is not just about the physical and emotional pain of CRPS but also about the battle for dignity and justice in the face of medical negligence. Fueled by the adrenaline rush of her long-standing fight against her illness, she bravely decided to file a lawsuit. This decision was not taken lightly, as she knows she is entering a long, and most likely, tiresome legal battle as there are thousands of cases of medical negligence that remain unaddressed.

Support, in such times, is incredibly important. Her family, her care team, and the CRPS Warriors Foundation are here to be a source strength and comfort. And so, this story is a call to arms for all those who suffer in silence, because, in the words of Deb herself, “doctors, despite their expertise and authority, are not God.”  Warriors should speak up for themselves, advocate for their rights, and find strength in solidarity.

“Doctors, despite their expertise and authority, are not God.”

Deborah’s journey is a reminder of the human cost of lack of compassion in the medical field. It shows the importance of empathy, attentiveness, and respect in healthcare, qualities that should be as common in the healthcare workforce as medical knowledge itself. Her story is a call to action for change, for accountability, and for a healthcare system that not only treats the illness but also honors the humanity of every patient. In her fight, Deborah is not just advocating for herself but for every individual who has been let down by the system. She stands tall, a warrior not just in her battle against CRPS, but in her pursuit of justice and a better world for all.

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