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30 July 2012 / stageivhope

A Message From Poop Strong HQ

Friends, it has been a crazy couple of days.

When I started Poop Strong six months ago, I never expected that its main mission — to raise the funds needed to cover the cost of my cancer treatment — would be moot. I expected August to roll around with me still on chemo, still dealing with the avalanche of paperwork and billing that comes with treatment, still wondering about how I was going to pay for it all.

Here we are, with August just around the corner. I’ve been off of chemo now for several months, and while there are still mountains of paperwork, I no longer have to worry about where the money will come from. And for that, there is only one thing I can say: THANK YOU!

This amazing turn of events could never have happened in a vacuum. The success of Poop Strong is because of the more than 1,500 people who bought something, who donated money or raffle prizes or t-shirt designs, who shared my story, who participated in the Twitter conversation that made my current peace of mind possible. The outpouring of support from friends, family, and total strangers has been overwhelming. There are no words that can fully explain how deeply grateful I am to each and every one of you.

Because of all of you, not only are all my bills going to be paid, but I will be able to donate the over $100,000 we collected since February 15 to other cancer patients in need — people who lack the time and energy and resources and connections to do what I have done. No one should ever have to choose financial stability over health, and no one should have to go through this sort of thing alone. My bills have been paid, but there are many others who are not so lucky, who fall through the cracks of our broken healthcare system. Thanks to the kindness and generosity of untold people, we can help provide a beacon of hope,  shine a spotlight on how the status quo is untenable, and hopefully bring about the necessary changes that result in a more compassionate, sane, just, and equitable healthcare system.



Leave a Comment
  1. jonah / Jul 30 2012 4:48 PM

    Arijit – your t-shirts came in the mail today, and their arrival couldn’t have made me happier. I put on the one with your huge smiling face and thought about all the ups and downs of your incredible journey. When you have time, I’m sure I’m not the only one who would love to hear more about your Twitter battle with Aetna – I think the story and the dialogue would make for a great graphic novella. What an incredible turn of events you’ve instigated – it couldn’t happen to a better person! And to top it all off, to be on break from treatment… it doesn’t get much better.

    Also I would like $10,000. :0

  2. janine / Jul 30 2012 7:23 PM

    Congratulations!! I’m so happy for you! Who knew Twitter could be so effective?

  3. nkaa / Jul 30 2012 9:06 PM

    Arijit, you are such a fabulous pooping human-being. In the midst of the Olympics, you have given us an American victory on this side of the pond. Gigantic bravo to you and the CEO of Aetna. You are brave and spirited, and Mr. Bertolini truly stepped up and owned the downfalls of his company and industry. I hope this is the first of many wins for all in your shoes.

    Best of luck in school and health! May you poop well and strong. :))


  4. Diana Schalk / Jul 31 2012 5:15 AM

    What a tremendous act of generosity. Rejoicing with you over your treatment success. I’d like to know how you were able to raise funds. I was diagnosed over 2 years ago stage IV Mestatic Breast cancer at the age of 47 after never having a bad mammogram. Every one of the 5 treatments have failed. Just started 6th treatment plan yesterday.
    My medical bills are piles up so much that I don’t even know how much we owe. The med center billing is so confusing with multiple bills for one procedure, visit, treatment, test etc.

  5. ChemoBabe (@chemo_babe) / Aug 2 2012 6:32 AM

    This will go down in twitter history and the history of health care in the US. What you have done has made a huge difference. Thank you, and keep pooping strong.


  1. Arijit Guha, Cancer Patient, Wins Twitter War Against Insurance Company | Cancer Kick
  2. Poor Customer Issue Remediation on Twitter Results in PR Catastrophe for Aetna | re:group inc. | Integrated Marketing Agency
  3. Celebrating the journey of graduate student Arijit Guha | As We Now Think

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