Woman’s identity baffles hospital, authorities

South Texas Health Systems is asking for the public’s assistance in contacting relatives of a woman suffering from dementia and no local family contacts. The woman, going by the name of Maria Barrera, has been at Edinburg Regional Medical Center since March 23.

In March, Barrera was taken by ambulance to the emergency room at Edinburg Regional Medical Center. She was anemic, dehydrated, and disorientated, and suffered from dementia. She had been helped by a family in Edinburg who had been feeding her and giving her a place to sleep; however, Maria became too much to handle for the Good Samaritans. She left, allegedly wandered the streets and fell.

The hospital has done an exhaustive search to help Barrera. Case workers at Edinburg Regional Medical Center have worked with various agencies in the community and with local, state and federal law enforcement officials, but no information has been uncovered that would help identify Maria and qualify her for any kind of benefits. She is essentially homeless and living in the hospital.

Barrera weighs 73 pounds and said she was born in 1937 or 1945. She said she was born in Mercedes and that her father’s name is Jose Barrera and her mother is Celestina. Barrera said she was raised by her grandmother, had a brother who died and a sister she does not speak to and does not know her whereabouts. She possibly worked at the old Hagar plant in Edinburg. She speaks only Spanish. This information may not be accurate since Maria’s memory is failing.

If anyone has any information to help identify Maria and get her into long-term living arrangements or reunited with family or friends, please call the House Supervisor at 956-388-6512. This number is active 24 hours a day 7 days a week. If no one answers right away, please leave a message and the case management team will get in touch with you.

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