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Dean's Story

Dean was born through an emergency C-Section. I didn't have insurance but I had saved up enough money to have a home birth with a midwife and if needed a normal birth in a hospital. After more than 2 days of labour Dean's heartbeat started to get erratic and we rushed into a hospital where Dean was delivery by emergency C-Section. The hospital staff were wonderful and never did I feel like I wouldn't get the treatment we needed because of a lack of insurance. Unfortunately Dean's APGAR score at birth was just 1! He was born not breathing and had to be resuscitated. His APGAR score after 30 minutes was 2 and then finally after an hour he went up to 4. These scores were very troubling and so he was rushed to the nearby NICU which was in Nashville Women's Hospital in Tennessee. We hadn't budgeted for a week of NICU care for Dean! The financial staff there did treat us like welfare folks. It was pretty sad and rough. I was being pushed to feed Dean formula but I insisted I would only give him breastmilk. I signed myself out of my hospital over 1 hour away from Dean's hospital so I could hang out in the waiting room and be able to breastfeed Dean every 2-3 hours. It was something I felt I had to do to help Dean become a healthy baby. Finally a very kind young woman who was working in the social care office of the Hospital met with me one day about paying for our hospital bills. She was so sweet and friendly and told us we had the option of applying for Medicaid. We did it of course and I am so glad she was there to help us through this. Dean is now almost 8.5 months old and his bills are all taken care of. I have also paid off almost 90% of the bills related to my own stay - as a non-American (I am Canadian) I couldn't be covered by Medicaid unfortunately.

I love the US and love that my son is an American. We are so proud!

—AsyaIL
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