Austin family heading to D.C. to fight for Medicaid funding

Austin family headed to Washington to fight health care bill

AUSTIN, Texas -- Two-year-old Apollo Howell inspires his parents.

He was born with a malformation of his trachea and esophagus.

At 4 months old, he had emergency surgery to rebuild his airway and he now eats through a tube.

"He has chronic lung disease -- he has several other chronic diseases,” said Kate Robinson-Howell, Apollo’s mother.

They have private insurance but they depend on Medicaid.

"Medicaid is the thing that wraps around health insurance,” Robinson-Howell said. “And (it) provides a lot of services and support that our insurance wouldn't."

They are one of 40 families traveling to Washington, D.C. Tuesday, asking legislators from Texas to avoid cutting children's Medicaid funding. 

They will be joined by their doctor, Mark Shen, who works at the Dell Children's Medical Center.

"Apollo is here and healthy and doing amazing for an extremely rare, complex condition – only because of Medicaid,” Shen said.

Families such as the Howells want to make their voices heard.

"We want our senators and our representatives to hear this loud and clear,” Robinson-Howell said.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


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