Fixing Iowa's Healthcare Crisis
Video: Carissa's children during The Wave while her son was in the children's hospital.
When you have a child who doesn't breathe at night, it straightens your priorities out right quick. And Carissa's priorities are straight: at the top of the list is fixing our healthcare crisis.
First, across Iowa, there is a shortage of nurses. In rural and small towns, this shortage is a crisis. Carissa’s family knows this crisis first hand because they have been unable to hire a second overnight nurse to keep her son alive at night. Her family’s coverage has been reduced to four nights a week.
Second, the privatization of Medicaid has added heartache to already struggling families. Families are losing access to care and facing bloated costs, while for-profit, out-of-state insurance companies profit off our sick kids. When an interviewer came to recertify Hans’ coverage, she only asked me standardized questions that didn’t apply to his rare condition, despite having years of his medical records. And then she asked me if we would be willing to put Hans in a nursing home if he didn’t have Medicaid any longer. I said “no” as any mother would. And they denied his coverage. It took follow-up phone calls and more interviewing to get him covered again.
Third, the privatization of Medicaid has destabilized the entire healthcare system in Iowa. Our nursing homes and rural hospitals are at risk. DHS has lost workers. Carissa’s son has had six different case managers since Medicaid was privatized.
Fourth, the mental health continues to be a crisis, especially in our rural areas and schools.
From our family here in Denver, IA, to families in every corner of our state - Iowans have put up with this Medicaid privatization debacle for far too long.
Carissa will fight to fix Iowa’s healthcare crisis like her son’s life depends on it... because it does.