One woman's struggle through a mental illness has shed light on lack of resources in the Four States. The woman is sharing some of her deepest emotions with the public, so that more awareness can be given towards this dangerous mental condition.
Ronnie and Bea Segura have been together for 28 years. Two years ago, though, Bea give up on their relationship, and her life.
"I felt he would be better off without me in this disease," says Bea.
Bea tried to overdose on pills.
"She's everything. My whole world," said Ronnie with tears in his eyes.
Ronnie's care and love towards his wife have been no match to what Bea calls something evil.
"She quit going to church, quit believing in the Lord. She said the devil has her," says Ronnie.
Bea weighs 138 pounds.
"The weight is what's getting to me now, is just having the weight on me," says Bea.
Bea has anorexia. She weighed 80 pounds in 2013, 2014, and 2015.
Staci Adams, office manager for College Skyline Psychology center in Joplin, says finding a psychologist in the Four States who specializes in one issue is nearly impossible because of feasibility.
"We're not like Kansas City, we're not like St. Louis. You would not have any business if you were only going to specialize in one thing," says Adams.
"There is none in the State of Missouri that accepts Medicaid or Medicare for an in-patient eating disorder," says Ronnie.
Adams says health insurance plans can be confusing to even insurance company workers.
"The first thing the insurance company says to you when you call on someone's benefits is the disclaimer that what they're saying may not be correct," says Adams.
Ronnie and Bea did end up finding in-patient clinics to help, but they've all come with heavy prices: $1,500 in copay for each of the four clinics.
Bea was discharged from the last clinic a year ago, and is now eating more food.
"I wouldn't want anybody to go through what we have gone through," says Ronnie.
Bea is thankful, though, she has had a partner through everything.
"He's my best friend, and my husband," says Bea.
The National Eating Disorders Association says there has been inadequate funding for research on eating disorder illnesses. According to the NEDA, average funding of research dollars per affected individual was just 93 cents, compared to $44 for autism, and $88 for Alzheimer's Disease.
KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas