Texan couple Maria and Jake Grey are facing a devastating choice for the sake of the health of their six-year-old daughter.
Maria and Jake are the parents of two-year-old Fairen and six-year-old Brighton and their eldest daughter was born with the rare genetic condition Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome. The condition has resulted in delayed growth and intellectual development, as well as hearing and vision impairments. Speaking to NBC’s Today, they say Brighton has the developmental age of a newborn.
“She requires 24/7 care,” says Maria, who also spoke about their struggle to keep up with her medical expenses.
Unfortunately due to army veteran Jake's AU$54,000 salary, they don't qualify for Medicaid and despite filing for state assistance, they're currently sitting at number 60,000 on the waiting list. Meanwhile, they say they're spending AU$20,300 annually on medical expenses, even though they have private health insurance.
"It's drowning us,” says Jake.
"We've done everything we can do to try to keep her afloat, and we're going to reach a point where we can't do it and we won't have another option. We don't know what to do."
Now, they're considering divorce so Maria can qualify for Medicaid healthcare as an unemployed single mother-of-two, even though she says it shouldn't have to come to this.
Instead she sees this is a failure of the government, and wants to create awareness for other families in similar situations.
"You try anything when it comes to your child," Maria explains.
“We are not looking for charity, we're not looking for money or donations. We don't want a GoFundMe — we don’t want any of that.