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Viewers Reach Out To Woman Denied Hospice Care Because Of Where She Lives

NORTH SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A woman dying from cancer who was denied hospice care because of where she lived is now getting the care she needs a day after a CBS13 story aired.

We reached out to Mercy San Juan Medical Center for three days now to answer our questions about why Gloria Madrid wasn't getting the care she needed.

A spokesperson has refused to answer our questions on camera each time.

For Jennifer Gallegos, it's been a hectic few days. In her mother's final days, she's been scrambling to find hospice care. Madrid's pain medication and medical supplies for her cancer had run out.

Gallegos says nurses from Mercy stopped going to their North Sacramento apartment, because they were afraid of the crime.

"I told Mercy hospice, 'If I lived in Folsom, if I lived in a rich area, would you come out?' They said, 'We have no problem with that.'"

After our story aired on Thursday, viewers like Bill Marinelli called our newsroom to offer Madrid help. He's a nurse, and he says doing nothing wasn't an option.

"Anything that they need, whether it'd be some medication management, anything," said Marinelli.

Gallegos says the hospice nurses she thought were supposed to help her dying mother, left her dying for help instead.

"I'm angry because right now it's a delicate moment for my mother, my family," she said.

The hospital gave CBS13 a statement on Thursday saying it doesn't require its workers to work in unsafe environments, and they work to identify other available care options.

Gallegos said after CBS13 pressed for answers, the hospital finally called her, saying they'd found a hospice worker from another hospital. But by then, a doctor willing to help at no cost had already reached out to her.

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