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Immigrant transplant survivor gets deferral, health insurance restored

USCIS Delay interrupted coverage for life sustaining medications

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approved a medical deferment for Abraham Navarrete-Morales months after the last one expired. The Ann Arbor immigrant requires medication to keep his transplanted kidney functioning but was not able to renew his insurance in September due to his lack of legal status. Since then, he relied on charity to supply his prescription from month to month. However, now that USCIS has finally responded to his request, he will be able to renew his policy on the public marketplace ahead of the December 15th deadline.

Morales’ Attorney, Brad Thomson credits the late movement on recent public attention drawn to his client following a press conference held in September. “I’d done everything I could do for him as a lawyer,” Thomson said. “I’m thankful for everyone who helped save his life, the community, Michigan United and my support staff.”

Morales has been dependent on the charity of the University of Michigan emergency medications fund but that assistance was slated to run out at the end of the year. With his immigration status now restored, he can get his medical insurance reinstated so he can afford the drugs needed to fight rejection of his new kidney and a CPAP machine to help keep his blood pressure in check. In the meantime, Morales is beginning the process of applying for next year’s deferral now to avoid another delay.

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