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23 weeker

My daughter was born 14 months ago, weighing 560 grams. She spent over 20o days in the NICU. Medicaid covered her expenses while in the hospital, and has paid for her doctors appointments since coming home to live with us.

My husband is a Naval Officer, starting his medical residency in Pediatrics this summer. We are so grateful for the Government Programs which have allowed him to remain in medical school and fulfill his life long dreams of becoming a doctor. I have remained in school, taking classes online, and will hopefully receive my teaching certification for High School science this December. Without Medicaid, my husband would have had to take a leave of absence from medical school and find a job that provided medical insurance for us. Even then, with coverage at 80/20, we would have been looking at hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills.

Our daughter is a survivor. She laughs, interacts and brings joy into our lives daily. It has been an incredibly stressful time, watching her struggle to overcome so much. She is fed through a J-tube, and still requires supplemental oxygen; nasal cannula while awake and CPAP while asleep. She gets therapy three times a week, and is making great improvement. She is sitting up, learning to use her hands, and is making attempts to get up on hands and knees. We know that she will be crawling soon, and before we know it, she'll be off and running. This girl is a fighter.

She had a chance because our Government gave her one. I'm proud to be an American, where my tax dollars support other Americans fighting to survive.

(her blog can be seen at www.cak-micropreemie.blogspot.com)

—AmandaPA
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