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Legatus Magazine

Cover Story
Katie Hannibal | author
Jun 01, 2015
Filed under Your Health
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Seeing is believing for Milwaukee Legate

Milwaukee Legate JIM KRAUTKRAMER had a remarkable experience with Healthnetwork . . .

by Katie Hannibal

Legatus member Jim Krautkramer’s first experience with Healthnetwork Foundation was a resounding success, and he doesn’t hesitate to tell others about it.

A member of Legatus’ Milwaukee Chapter, Krautkramer had a disease of the cornea called Fuchs’ Dystrophy — a rare genetic condition affecting only 1% of the population. When he initially called Healthnetwork, he knew he needed an expert ophthalmologist with a great deal of experience with Fuchs Dystrophy and corneal transplants. He certainly didn’t want to have his vision permanently impaired.

Jim and Linda Krautkramer are members of Legatus’ Milwaukee Chapter

Jim and Linda Krautkramer are members
of Legatus’ Milwaukee Chapter

Healthnetwork medical coordinator Pat sensed Krautkramer’s apprehensiveness, qualified the medical issue at hand, and put him at ease. Along with the Healthnetwork team, Pat provided extensive research from numerous requests to expand the list of providers, their background information, and statistics of success for the surgery. Once Krautkramer and his wife Linda had selected a provider, his first appointment at Cleveland Clinic’s Cole Eye Institute occurred within one week with the assistance of Cleveland Clinic’s liaison, Mary Ellen. Krautkramer met with leading ophthalmologist Dr. William Dupps in the transplant center.

“Dr. Dupps was outstanding and so knowledgeable about Fuchs,” Krautkramer said. “He thoroughly explained my exact symptoms at the beginning of the visit.” Krautkramer knew he needed surgery in both eyes, and after his consult with the doctor, he had every confidence that Dupps was the doctor he wanted to perform the surgery.

“Communication was superb, from discussing the symptoms of Fuchs Dystrophy, the test results and alternatives of the treatment, all the way through and during the surgery and post-operation visits. Doctor Dupps was always accessible. His informative, yet humble guidance, continuously kept me abreast of what I should expect or experience during this process.”

Krautkramer went on to say that the team was fantastic and professional, with obvious expertise.

The cornea transplant surgeries were a huge success and Krautkramer is so grateful for the help and guidance he received in making decisions about treatment. Krautkramer experienced a dramatic, positive change in his vision after his cornea transplant surgeries. Furthermore, Dupps indicated that Krautkramer will experience continuous improvement over the next two years.

“Although my vision isn’t perfect, I can basically function without any glasses since my right eye has been corrected to see near, intermediate and distance. I now feel comfortable driving day or night,” Krautkramer explained.

“Healthnetwork is the best thing that ever happened to me! I am so blessed. Pat and Mary Ellen made the whole process seamless, from the first call to continuous follow-up appointments. I firmly believe that without Healthnetwork, I would not have had the proper resources and help to resolve my vision difficulties.”

Krautkramer says he’s grateful for the help he received — and he’s especially pleased about his decision to become a Healthnetwork GOLD Supporter. “I cannot express adequate appreciation for all that they [Healthnetwork] have done. They exceeded my expectations in so many ways. How can you not be thrilled and want to share your story so that others may learn about this wonderful organization.”

KATIE HANNIBAL is Healthnetwork Foundation’s marketing director.

HEALTHNETWORK is a Legatus membership benefit, a healthcare “concierge service” that provides members and their families access to some of the most respected hospitals in the world. One Call Starts It All: (866) 968-2467 or (440) 893-0830. Email: help@healthnetworkfoundation.org

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