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New moms struggle with medical debt

Posted: 6:51 PM, Jun 27, 2019
Updated: 2019-06-27 20:06:54-04
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Every day inside her Mt. Juliet home, Kelsey Bryson is performing the most delicate of balancing acts, trying her best to keep her newborn son Keegan happy.

Barely strong enough to hold up his own little head and yet Keegan is already in debt.

"I had to go to the emergency room in the very beginning," she said.

Born at St. Thomas, this little guy had a fairly normal pregnancy. But as hairstylist, his mom isn't currently working. No paycheck right now and no health insurance means Kelsey is relying on TennCare. Still though it does not cover most of their medical bills.

"Six weeks old, it’s ridiculous, it’s so ridiculous how much it costs to be healthy," she adds.

Theirs is a story repeated countless times across Tennessee. Thousands of people forced in debt, sometimes into bankruptcy simply because they got sick or in Keegan's case, simply because he's an infant who needs to go to the doctors.

"It’s not his fault that he needs so much attention, it’s just the way it is, and I don’t think it’s fair for him and I to be racking up so much medical debt, that’s why we have insurance but insurance doesn’t cover what it should," she said.

A tough lesson this new mom is learning first hand.

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