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Mar 27

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Osvaldo's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Osvaldo.pic.2.jpgWe first met Osvaldo, then a smart, creative 7-year-old, during the 2013 Speak Now for Kids Family Advocacy Day. At 10 months old Osvaldo was diagnosed with spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy, a severe form of cerebral palsy that affects muscles in his core and in all four limbs.

Mar 25

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Antonio's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

AntonioReider_CHA_Fb_Feb._2015_2_.jpgAntonio first came to our attention as a participant of Speak Now for Kids’ Family Advocacy Day. When he was only 6, Antonio was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia, a condition where his immune system attacks his bone marrow. Antonio immediately began intensive immune suppression treatment. Over the next few months, his blood counts only improved slightly, and it was clear the family needed to start preparations for a bone marrow transplant.

Mar 23

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Kara's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

kara.jpgWe first met 17-year-old Kara when she attended last year’s Family Advocacy Day with her family. Born by an emergency Caesarian section after her fetal heart rate dropped, she spent the first 2 months of her life in the hospital. During that time, Kara, who was diagnosed with severe cerebral palsy, also had to recover from immediate onset of seizures at birth due to an 80 percent blood loss, as well as kidney failure.

Mar 21

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- A Mom's View

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Today’s post was written by Deirdre, a mother of 4.


Unexpectedly Uninsured

Dee_Kids.jpgCaring for a child with special health needs was nothing new for me. I adopted Armere 22 years ago from a pediatric nursing home. He was born at 26 weeks gestation and was dependent on a ventilator to breathe. At the time I was single and working at Children’s Specialized Hospital while going to nursing school part time. I married my husband in 2001 and our family grew when we adopted another son, Jebrill, who is on the autism spectrum. Three short years later we welcomed our first biological daughter, Alyssa; 11 months later we welcomed a second daughter, Nicole. Having two girls so close in age, it was clear that Alyssa’s speech was delayed and her muscle tone low when compared to her younger sister. With two more children, we continued to rely heavily on our health insurance for specialty pediatric services, including frequent therapy visits, doctor visits and several prescription medications.

Mar 17

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Trenton's Story

Trenton1.JPGThroughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Today’s post was written by Trenton’s mother, Andrea. This is an extra special one as today is Trenton’s 6th birthday.



I had to quit my job when my third child, Trenton, was born with a congenital heart defect and Down syndrome. The choice to become a full-time mom and medical advocate for me son was obvious, yet the financial impact to our family was big. With my loss of income - even with my husband working full time - we struggled to pay for health insurance. Due to our financial struggles, CHIP became vital in assuring that all three of my children’s medical needs were taken care of.

Mar 15

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Jaden's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Jaden.jpgYou may recognize 6-year-old Jaden as the Speak Now for Kids national ambassador. Born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a congenital heart defect in which the left side of the heart is severely underdeveloped, he underwent open-heart surgery at just 4 days old. Since then, Jaden had two additional open-heart surgeries, several catherizations, the insertion of a gastric feeding tube, and months of physical rehabilitation.

Mar 13

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Lily's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.


LilyPuntney_update.jpgWe were first introduced to Lillian Hope Putney when, as a 14 year old, she participated in the 2013 Speak Now for Kids’ Family Advocacy Day. When Lily was born in Yokosuka, Japan, she was happy, healthy, and developmentally normal until about 15 months of age. An ear infection failed to respond to a week of standard antibiotics and her condition spiraled out of control, leading to “presumed viral encephalitis,” where a virus caused inflammation of the brain, leading to seizures and brain damage.

Mar 11

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Zion's Story

ST600zion.jpgThroughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

2014 Speak Now for Kids’ Family Advocacy Day alum Zion got his nickname, “The Mayor,” when he introduced himself to all the neighbors when he moved to South Carolina just two years ago. In his words, it’s all “shaking hands and kissing babies.”

Mar 09

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Dayson's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Ortiz_Dayson_YaleNewHavenAPPROVED.jpgWe first had the pleasure of meeting Dayson, then just 4 years old, when he and his family attended Speak Now for Kids’ Family Advocacy Day in 2013. Even after spending the first 11 months of his life as a patient at Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital because of pulmonary atresia, Dayson was a bundle of energy.

Mar 07

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Rebecca's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Rebecca_2.jpgWhen we met Rebecca during the 2012 Speak Now for Kids Family Advocacy Day, she was the only reported case of a rare chromosome abnormality. At just 7 years old she had been hospitalized at Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital 16 times in a mere 22 months. During that time Rebecca had, among other procedures, a total of 50 MRI and CT Scans, three sets of ear tubes and a ventricular-peritoneal shunt.

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