Inspiration can take many forms. For Rev. James Brigman, Jr., pastor of St. Paul United Methodist Church and his wife, Lori, it comes in the form of a child. The child is their 9-year-old daughter, Lauren Faith Brigman, who is a CAP/C (Community Alternative Program/children) child. This means Lauren is considered medically fragile for life.
The CAP/C program is a Medicaid waiver program created to provide services for medically fragile children under 21 who are at risk of institutional care. It allows children who need long-term nursing care to stay at home with their family instead of having to stay in a nursing home or hospital. This program allows Lauren Faith to receive in-home services while her parents work. The Brigmans are concerned that cuts will be made in Medicaid, endangering the CAP/C program that her mother says has kept Lauren Faith alive since her birth in Chapel Hill as a 1 lb. 11 oz. preemie. During her 2nd month of pregnancy, Brigman contracted a rare virus, which affected the development of her unborn child’s brain.
The Brigmans worried how they were going to be able to afford insurance for their child. They were self-employed and couldn’t afford their own insurance at the time. Then they heard about the CAP/C Medicaid program. This program began after President Ronald Reagan signed a bill allowing medically fragile children to receive care in the comfort and security of their own homes, while reducing the overall costs of care. Lauren Faith remains under the care of 8-10 specialists in Chapel Hill for every part of her body.
CAP/C children are expensive children to cover and every cut in North Carolina is a risk to these children. Brigman states that this population of medically fragile children could unintentionally be overlooked if not for advocates speaking out and putting the information out there. Her fear is that” items may not be written in the bill to protect these children; if Medicaid cuts are made it could risk their care and coverage. It may even mean the difference between life and death.” Brigman states that Medicare cuts are being discussed right now in Washington. It could come to a vote in the coming weeks. CAP/C makes it possible for Lauren Faith to have a life. Her mom believes she would never have survived without CAP/C. With it, “she’s happy and know she’s loved.”
James Brigman wants not only his daughter’s voice to be heard but those of other families across the nation. He wants Washington to take the time to really look at this health reform on Medicaid. That’s why he is walking to Washington. He left from the square in downtown Rockingham at 6:00 Friday morning. James says he’ll walk if it will bring awareness to this program.
“I stand for Lauren Faith because she cannot stand.
I walk for Lauren Faith because she cannot walk.
I speak for Lauren Faith because she cannot speak.”
And I lift Lauren Faith up because she lifts me.
Make your voice heard by joining the Brigman’s Facebook site: avoiceforlaurenfaithbrigmanandallmedicallyfragilechildren/adults
Cell phone 910-331-1049