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Republican Leaders Say They're Rejecting Plan To Change Medically Fragile Children's Program

Former Cincinnati Bengals Quarterback Boomer Esiason
Jo Ingles
Former Cincinnati Bengals Quarterback Boomer Esiason

Republican House leaders say they're rejecting a budget proposal to make changes to a program that helps pay medical bills for about 40,000 Ohio families with medically fragile children. And those families also got a boost from a well-known Ohio sports figure who knows what they’re dealing with.

Boomer Esiason has a child with cystic fibrosis. But the former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback doesn’t get help from the Bureau of Children with Medical Handicaps. But he joined families in that program at the Statehouse to say treatment for serious illnesses can cause serious financial stress.

“My son basically has a disease that basically costs an excess of $300,000 a year and while I do have very good insurance back home in New York to be able to cover that and I do have very good job security to fill in the doughnut holes, not every family in America is like ours.”

Families fear moving the program into Medicaid would reduce or eliminate some coverage, but Republican lawmakers are saying they don’t support that move.

Copyright 2017 The Statehouse News Bureau

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.