Letter to the Governor

June 16, 2015

 

Office of Governor Rick Scott

State of Florida

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, Fl 32399-0001

 

 

Re: Insurance for Children

 

To the Office of Governor Rick Scott:

 

This month my children find themselves without insurance coverage despite the assurance by the state of Florida that all children under the age of 18 are eligible for coverage. This is the second time in the last five years my family has found ourselves suddenly without insurance to protect both our medically fragile child, Riley, as well as our typically developing son, Ronan. Hopefully, my children will again receive this privilege again in the near future. However, I must request that your office explore streamlining the relationships between the Department of Children and Families, Medicaid and KidCare/HealthyKids. We find ourselves crossing state and federal programs as well as navigating several very cumbersome institutions.

 

The first weekend of May 2015, we were notified by mail that our Medicaid was due for renewal via application to Department of Children and Families. Since that time we have made every effort to remain in compliance. Medicaid discontinued services to our special needs child as of May 31, 2015. We hope Florida KidCare will begin to provide insurance beginning July 1, 2015. Multiple factors and complications, such as not being permitted to apply to KidCare while still possessing insurance, left my children with a minimum of a one month lapse in insurance.

 

As Medicaid has been withdrawn without the possibility of having coverage in place, my special needs child and family are in a very difficult predicament. We are now without medication renewals (Riley requires 5 daily medications and 6 as needed, I will be purchasing two today out of pocket), durable medical equipment request on hold (a special carseat to accommodate our recent loss of accessible vehicle and a new part for the bath chair), our daily health aid (this permits me to have part-time employment, be there for my typically developing child, help my own mother in her hip replacement recovery, etc. The loss of our health aid jeopardizes any ability I have to earn income, if I lose my work I cannot regain the health aid, Partner’s In Care (this includes our social worker, nurse, music therapy, scheduled respite, etc.), I am cancelling scheduled dental, ophthalmology, neurological and orthopedic appointments, and have lost our Children’s Medical Services. Each of these services is of extreme importance to my family. My husband and I have struggled for many years to rejoin the workforce and society. This challenge is jeopardizing all we have achieved.

 

There is another program to aid the extremely vulnerable children to help provide some of the necessary services and supplies, MedWaiver. Unfortunately, my own child has remained on the MedWaiver Waitlist for approximately 10 years because my family has not sufficiently demonstrated crisis. Demonstrating crisis as I understand it would be a willingness to surrender my child because of the challenges he brings to my family. Another demonstration would be requesting medical verification that caring for my child is becoming too difficult. Well, yes, it is difficult, but I love my child and am unwilling to take steps that would suggest otherwise. I am sure this process to being accepted into the MedWaiver program is more complicated than suggested above, however it appears to have a very curious acceptance mechanism which will remain a mystery to us.

 

My greatest objection is the lapse in insurance and services that I was quite incapable of preventing. Please take the time to explore the difficulty families have in communicating and navigating the Medicaid/KidCare insurance system. I do feel that this should be streamlined to prevent this unfortunate circumstance. Florida’s most vulnerable families are being put at risk by Florida’s inadequate systems. I would like to encourage you to investigate Florida’s insurance programs and services for children to prevent other families from being put in this challenging situation.

 

Best Regards,
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2 Responses to Letter to the Governor

  1. Lux Ganzon says:

    Oh, I thought the government there is so much better than around here.

    I hope this will be heard and acted on the soonest time possible.

  2. heidi says:

    I worked in social services for years. And I’m sad to say it sounds like not that much has changed.

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