Medicaid Success Stories: Kyla from Houston, TX
My name is Kyla. My husband and I have three children, two of whom are medically complex. We are hard-working, middle class, tax paying individuals. Without Medicaid and CHIP, we would be financially ruined and there is a very strong chance our children would not be alive today.
Katie, my 11-year-old, is covered by Medicaid as part of the Medically Dependent Children’s Program which has already experienced cuts that have affected her care. She has mitochondrial disease which affects multiple body systems. It took us years to find her diagnosis and build a team of physicians that understand the disease and how to treat it. She relies on a feeding tube for her nutrition and requires supplemental oxygen, along with a variety of other needs. She sees multiple specialists across two hospital systems. The cuts to MDCP have forced us to make difficult decisions between her specialist medical team and the hospital system that is best equipped to treat and monitor her rare disease, but we are thankful that she is still able to access the things she needs to survive. Further cuts could be catastrophic for her and for us. Katie is a very intelligent child with a love for reading, science, and performing in musical theater, in spite of her medical challenges. Her future could be very bright and she could greatly contribute to the future success of our wonderful state, but if she loses access to her physicians and the medical equipment she relies on to survive, she may not have a future. Medicaid is her lifeline, literally, and there are thousands of children like her that depend on it for their very survival.
My youngest child, Josephine, was born in 2015 with a large hole in her heart that required open heart surgery. Medicaid is the reason she had access to the pediatrician, echocardiogram, and cardiologist that diagnosed her. Medicaid is the reason she could be hospitalized, stabilized, medicated, and have a life-saving surgical procedure. Medicaid is the reason we were able to have her multiple life-threatening food allergies diagnosed. If we had not been able to see a doctor and get testing, she could have easily died from those undiagnosed allergies. Medicaid and CHIP have also given her access to life-saving Epi-Pens, regular cardiology check-ups to monitor her heart status, and access to therapy that is teaching her how to safely eat so that she will not be reliant on a feeding tube in the future. Josie’s young life has barely started and for her to have a chance of long-term survival, she needs continued access to the medical care that keeps her alive and monitors her conditions. She deserves a chance at life; a chance to grow up as a proud Texan and contribute to our state.
The Cover Texas Now Coalition is looking for stories like Mason’s. We’d like to know how the Affordable Care Act or Medicaid have helped you and your family. Are you willing to share your story with us? If so, please visit this page and tell us how these programs have affected you.