Miss Claudette is on the mend. Orange Is the New Black star Michelle Hurst, known to fans of the Netflix series as Piper Chapman's neatnik roommate, has awoken from a medically induced coma following a serious car accident a few weeks ago.
According to a fundraising page set up to help Hurst with her hospital bills, the actress is currently in the ICU at UNC Chapel Hill Hospital in Chapel Hill, N.C. "Michelle Hurst was in a bad car accident just before the holidays," the page reads. "She had major injuries, so the doctors put her in a medically induced coma to avoid movement while they did multiple surgeries near her spine."
The explanation goes on to note that Hurst is now out of the coma — after 16 days — and has opened her eyes. "She is progressing slowly, but progressing!" an update notes.
Hurst's OITNB costars Natasha Lyonne (Nicky Nichols) and Matt McGorry (John Bennett) tweeted links to the page and asked their followers to donate to her cause. "Please give what you can to help Michelle Hurst — the amazing actress who plays Miss Claudette on OINTB," Lyonne wrote on Jan. 16.
The fundraisers' goal was to raise $5,000 to "help pay for her medical expenses and time off of work." As of Friday, Jan. 17, however, more than double that amount — a total of $12,256 — had been donated by 216 supporters.
"People, you are amazing," tweeted Piper Kerman, the author whose memoir inspired Orange Is the New Black. "In less than 2 days you raised double the goal for Michele Hurst, a.k.a. 'Miss Claudette.'"
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