Fox59 takes action for student battling Crohn’s disease at IU

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By Jill Glavan

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (September 4, 2014) -- Getting through college is no cake walk and for student Jordan Louie, it's been even more difficult while battling a chronic illness.

Louie is, in a lot of ways, like any other eager IU student.

"I visited several different schools and IU just struck me as my favorite school," Louie said.

In a big way, though, he's different. Louie was diagnosed with Crohn's disease his freshman year. Since then, he's been in and out of the hospital while also trying to finish school. It's led to several semesters with dropped classes.

"It’s rough trying to do all these classes and trying to keep up with doctors and nurses. ... It used to be constant nurse calls every day," Louie said.

The first time it happened, his dad John Louie was reimbursed. He soon learned, though, that an IU policy prevented students from getting reimbursed for the same set of circumstances more than once.

That policy set off a series of denial after denial, costing the Louie family thousands of dollars.

"My parents would always tell me not to stress about it but it’s hard to not let that stress you because I know that I’m costing them a lot not just in medical bills and living, but school on top of that," Jordan Louie said.

"I just didn’t think it was fair. It was like he was being penalized just because he was sick," John Louie said.

That's when Louie came to Fox59 for help. It took only a day for IU to response to our request. This school year, the new bursar has reversed that old policy.

"Our bursar contacted Jordan Louie’s father today to inform him of the policy change and that we would be reversing the denial of his appeal in a timely manner," IU spokesperson Mark Land said.

To Louie's family, it was a huge relief. They hope that the reversal of the policy means other students in Jordan's situation will face an easier time getting through college without added financial stress.

For Jordan, though, he hopes more will be done. Particularly when it comes to professors, who are not bound by any set policy and he said often go across the map with how they handle his illness, which often causes him to miss class unexpectedly.

"It’s not that I’m not willing to put the effort in. I’ll put the effort in. I’ve done well in all the classes I’ve been able to take it’s just usually attendance is the biggest issue," Louie said.

For more on this policy and any questions you have about reimbursement, visit the IU Bursar's Office website here.