Michele, St. Louis County

Michele is 39 years old and lives in St. Louis County. She is a full-time mom to three young boys. Michele’s pregnancies have been difficult; her first son was born 8 weeks premature. He received medical help through the special care unit and was admitted to the NICU for one month. Thankfully, Michele and her son were covered through Medicaid during her pregnancy. Without Medicaid coverage, the family would have been hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt paying for the care her son needed to stay alive. “I’d still be paying those bills. Medicaid coverage saved us.” The entire family was through her husband’s employer for 10 years, but his income suddenly changed and they could no longer afford to keep the children on her husband’s plan. They applied for Medicaid coverage for the boys and are waiting to be approved. Right now, the boys are uninsured and Michele lives in constant fear that if one of her children were to get sick or injured she would not have a place to take them. “Even if I were on my deathbed, it’s more important that my children have health insurance than me. They are my priority.”