Grandma turns to Klein for med help

After a year of fighting to get health insurance coverage for her 4-year-old granddaughter, Bronx grandmother Anna Basile, with the help of Senator Jeff Klein, won her case.

Basile came to Klein’s office in the beginning of October, saying she couldn’t get insurance coverage for her granddaughter, Cristiana. Basile’s daughter passed away a little more than a year ago and Basile received full custody of her granddaughter. She wanted to enroll Cristiana in a managed care program but was told her granddaughter did not qualify since she was premature at birth. For an entire year Basile fought to get Cristiana medical coverage. She went to the Manhattan Medicaid office at least eight different times. She says, at one point a representative told her Cristiana would get coverage within ten days and still didn’t receive it. Upset and frustrated, Basile turned to Klein for help.

Klein sympathized with Basile, understanding the already existing hardships from a family tragedy in addition to battling an insurance company as a result of that tragedy. The senator immediately took on the case, calling and e-mailing a representative with the Department of Health and passing on Basile’s information.

The representative responded to Klein, saying a glitch in the computer system caused the problem and the department would fix it, immediately. A couple weeks later, Klein called the Department of Health again to follow up and make sure the issue would be resolved. A representative explained to Klein that when Cristiana’s mother passed away, department officials removed her and her daughter from the system. The representative also said now that she identified the root of the problem, she would definitely resolve it and fully activate Cristiana’s coverage by early December.

Cristiana’s coverage with HIP Health Plan of New York was activated this past week.

“It’s a relief. It’s like a burden was taken off my shoulders. This four year old child always had medical coverage and then her mother passed away and it discontinued. I tried everything to get her coverage and nothing worked,” said Anna Basile. “Senator Klein’s help was like a miracle. In a blink of an eye he settled the whole thing. Now, I feel great. Cristiana can go to the doctor and I don’t have to worry about it.”

“Mourning the loss of a loved one is difficult enough, especially the loss of a mother and daughter. Basile and Cristiana should not have had to face the additional stress of fighting for insurance and that’s why I made it a top priority to resolve the issue for them,” said Klein. “I am thrilled the problem has been resolved and I wish Ms. Basile and Cristiana only the best in moving forward.”

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