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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Message About Tragic Passing of Robin Williams

From: Herbert Stein []
Sent: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 3:38 AM
To: Madam Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell, United States Secretary of Health and Human Services
Subject: Message About Tragic Passing of Robin Williams

Dear Madam Secretary Burwell,

“Unfortunately, every day over 100 Americans die as a result of suicide.” --- Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D., President & CEO, Brain & Behavior Research Foundation

Just what does it take for you and your cadre of subordinates to understand that there are a number of VNS Therapy volunteer study subjects and patients who have finally achieved a degree of wellness and wish to continue doing so if not for the obstacles your organization and the health insurance industry has put before them.

I have previously laid out before you that the CMS decision of May 4, 2007 was careless, ignorant, stupid, egregious, unconscionable and criminal by overlooking care for the existing patients and especially for those having benefited from the VNS Therapy and wishing to continue with the therapy.  Judge John Smith’s decision further justifies this position.

How many more individuals have to be added to Dr. Borenstein’s list of “Americans die as result of suicide”?  Does the buck not stop at your desk?  Are you not the “boss”?

Again, I am asking you for a formal document be signed to protect this patient population to insure that they have access to and obtain medical health insurance coverage.  I am also asking for your office to influence the private health insurance companies to similarly follow suit.

This issue has drawn on since May 4, 2007.  These patients have been seriously wronged like no other by the short-sightedness of CMS.  Is it not time to right this harmful wrong?  Please act now. 



Joyce and Herbert Stein

1008 Trailmore Lane

Weston, FL 33326-2816

(954) 349-8733

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation <>
Date: Wed, Aug 13, 2014 at 1:03 PM
Subject: Message About Tragic Passing of Robin Williams
To: Herbert <>


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Dear Foundation Supporters,I am saddened by the very tragic passing of Robin Williams. Unfortunately, every day over 100 Americans die as a result of suicide. The national conversation in the media about Robin Williams will hopefully encourage people to seek treatment and not suffer in silence. I also hope that the media attention will reduce stigma and encourage increased support for research to develop new methods of treatment of brain disorders. I had the privilege of representing our Foundation and joining the national conversation about suicide and suicide prevention. Please see the links to the CBS Evening News, WPIX News, and Bloomberg article.
Thank you for your ongoing commitment to the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation. Please help the families of today and tomorrow by SUPPORTING brain research.
Better treatments and breakthroughs come from scientific discovery.
With warmest regards and appreciation,
Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D.
President & CEO
Brain & Behavior Research Foundation

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