Kathy Acker in Crisis

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Posted by dbkk on November 25, 1997 at 11:40:10:

As some of you may have heard, Kathy Acker is in crisis. She is in a
hospital in Tijuana with cancer of the lung, liver and spleen. She is very
weak and her only hope is the combined holistic and allopathic treatment she
is receiving at American Biologics' clinic. But this help is costly and her
financial resources are on the verge of running out. She has no medical
insurance. Like many artists and writers, she was never able to secure
benefits from any institution.

Kathy Acker was diagnosed with breast cancer in April 1996. Shortly
thereafter she had a full mastectomy and there was some involvement in her
lymph nodes. After the surgery she underwent extensive alternative therapies
in San Francisco, then moved to London to be with friends in August '96.
(This period is described in "The Gift of Disease") Over the summer of 1997
she suffered increasingly bad health, ranging from digestive disorders to
pneumonia. Once back in San Francisco in the fall, her condition worsened
and she finally was taken to the emergency room by Sharon Grace and Matias
Viegener. At Davies Medical Center, she was told she had advanced cancer of
the liver, pancreas, spleen, and lungs.

In the hospital, she was given few options but morphine and hospice care;
Kathy chose to persue alternative treatment. On November 1, she was taken to
American Biologics, a holistic integrated health clinic in Tijuana, Mexico.
Thanks to treatment she is getting there, and her strong will, her condition
is stable. However, she is running out of money. $28,000 of her savings of
approximately $40,000 have already been spent in hospitalization in Mexico,
and the bills from 8 days in Davies Medical Center in SF are already past
$30,000 (these we hope to defer indefinitely; Medicare is still pending for
at least part of them). The financial crisis is looming.

We have made arrangements with the John Giorno Fund for Artists with AIDS to
be the receiver of any contributions (which would make them tax-deductible,
and 100% of the donations will go to Kathy's bills). The address is Giorno
Poetry Systems, 222 Bowery NY NY 10012; the check itself may be made out to
JOHN GIORNO and on the memo line write "Kathy Acker Fund."

Kathy has a solid core of people caring for her and is happy with American
Biologics' hospital, where Matias Viegener, Amy Scholder, Sylvere Lotringer,
Ira Silverberg, and David Antin among others have been with her. As phone
calls tend to exhaust her now, she asks that people who are concerned write
her c/o American Biologics, Chula Vista, CA 91911 (this is the American
office of the clinic).

Anything you can do would be appreciated. Please forward this email to
anyone you believe can help.

Thank you,

Matias Viegener, Los Angeles (viegener@calarts.edu) 213-667-0973
David Antin, San Diego (dantin@ucsd.edu) 619-755-4619
Sharon Grace, San Francisco (grace@sirius.com) 415-543-3685
Sylvere Lotringer, New York (sl25@columbia.edu) 212-854-3956
Amy Scholder, New York (LonerA@aol.com) 212-673-4012
Ira Silverberg, New York (ira@silverberg.com) 212-614-7885

is the website for American Biologics.

has KA's article
of last winter about her cancer.

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