Criticism for Brewer for declaring 'Child Health Day' in wake of cuts

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PHOENIX - There is criticism of Gov. Jan Brewer for declaring Monday Child Health Care Day in Arizona in the wake of severe budget cuts to programs.

It is expected that both the governor and her democratic challenger, Terry Goddard, are going to try and use cuts to Kids Care and Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System to their political benefit.

For one local mother the issue is not about politics, it is a real-life dilemma with her daughter’s health insurance hanging in the balance.

“You know, my first thought was that I failed her," Dianne Ereth said.

She is lamenting the fact that in a couple of months her 7-year-old daughter, Sierra, will be left without health insurance.

Ereth said that had she known then what she knows now, she would have refused to fill out the application for AHCCCS, Arizona's answer to Medicaid. Ereth applied after being hospitalized for a catastrophic illness.

"I would rather make payments to the hospital for the rest of my life if I have to than jeopardize my daughter’s health insurance,” she said.

Sierra was taken off of Kids Care and now both mother and daughter are on AHCCCS, albeit temporarily.

“August 31, we were both cut off," Ereth said. " We didn’t know about this. We were never informed. We were never sent a letter saying we were going to lose our coverage."

The Ereth family has been given a 90-day emergency re-instatement, which runs out Nov. 31. In the meantime, Sierra cannot get back on Kids Care because the Legislature has frozen enrollment in order to save money.

"The bottom line is my daughter was forced off of a program that was put in place to give families affordable health insurance for their children,” Ereth said.