Friday, May 10, 2013

The difficulty of funding the needs of a special needs child

Jen Mohn, mother of Hannah Faith Mohn, a 3-year-old who struggles with a debilitating neuromuscular disorder yesterday spoke of the year-long battle with Hannah's insurance company to get her new $34,000 wheelchair approved. They finally received the wheelchair in the middle of April.

"It's like a full-time job trying to get something approved by insurance," Jen said. "There needs to be regulation in terms of approving these necessary pieces of equipment. It needs to be more personalized. I know we were asking a lot for this wheelchair but if they came to actually see Hannah they would understand."

With the difficulties in getting funding for equipment for Hannah to be independent and mobile, the Mohn's often fall on community support. In February The Reporter ran a story chronicling Hannah's story and her need and the community responded in astronomical ways. 

With the community's support, the Mohn's were able to retrofit their minivan to fit Hannah's new wheelchair.
Within a week of the article running on the front page of The Reporter, the Mohns could afford this $3,600 cost. Read the letter chronicling the response here.

Jennifer Connor, Community Engagement Editor at The Reporter, plans on investigating the challenge for families with children with special needs to get funding for necessary costs in an upcoming series. If you are a family with a special needs child and want to share your story and struggle, email Jennifer at

The Mohn family, Jen and Tim with their son Andrew,6, and daughter Hannah Faith together on Saturday February 16,2013. Photo by Mark C Psoras\The Reporter

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