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Six months have passed since the deadly explosions at the Boston Marathon. For many victims like Joanna Leigh -- a 39-year-old with a Ph.D. who suffered a traumatic brain injury at the marathon -- getting access to sufficient financial assistance has become struggle of its own.
Leigh and a number of other victims are seeking more money from The One Fund charity for survivors.
One Fund Distribution
Leigh's new life is in stark contrast to the one she had before that fateful day on Boylston Street.
Her doctoral degree in international development and promising career as a consultant have been supplanted by seemingly insurmountable struggles with cooking, trying to remember where she is, and applying for food stamps.
Leigh's medicals bills total $70,000. But because she never went to a hospital after being knocked unconscious by the second bomb, she only received $8,000 from The One Fund charity, according to The Washington Post.
Victims receive payouts from the charity based on the number of nights spent in the hospital. A single night was worth $125,000; 32 nights qualified victims for $948,000. The 143 people who were treated as outpatients received $8,000 each.
Leigh and four other survivors plan to petition The One Fund to develop a new formula for distributing funds to victims with injuries that take time to emerge. The charity has $10 million more in donations to distribute, according to the Boston Herald.
Other victims hope to secure more money for amputees who claim the payouts fall short of covering the staggering costs of prostheses and other medical care.
Concerns About Fraud
"We have to be careful. We have to be thorough. And we'll try as best we can to be fair," said Mike Sheehan, the One Fund's treasurer, according to the Post.
Recalculating fund disbursement will include a slew of administrative hoops, in part to prevent fraudulent claims.
Days ago, a New York woman was indicted by a grand jury for collecting on a fraudulent $480,000 claim from the charity, according to the Back Bay Patch.