Monday, March 9, 2009

My little money makers

I was recently reminded that some people think foster parents are in it for the money. Yes, that's so true. Here is what we have to go through to get our $21.00/day

Baby gates that didn't work - $60

Baby gates that did work - $135

Baby proofing that didn't work - $45

Putting locks on every door in our house - $75

Chains and door stoppers - $60

New washer and dryer $1400

Miles on car each month attributed soley to fostering - 440

Pullups each month $56

Babysitting $10/hour plus $125/year for licensing

Fire inspection $60/year

Health inspection $45/year

CPR and First Aid class $60/person over 14/year

Mothers Day Out $570/month

McDonalds on visit days $16

Gas station snacks on visit days $8

Sippy cups $1000 (give or take)

Car seats $300

Beds broken $240

Remodeling to accomodate $2500 probably more

Bandaids $400/month

Then there are the hundreds of rolls of toilet paper, the new toilet that will flush shampoo bottles because somebody is always trying to flush something that they shouldn't and we got tired of paying the plumber. The countless bottles of their brother's shampoo and body wash that he won't put away, (I don't pay for that though), the gallons of paint we will need when they get over their artistic phase. The upholstery they've cut, the dvd players they've overfed. The dvd's they've broken. The upholstery in the car. The 12 passenger van, the repairs to the 12 passenger van. The brand new 8 seater van. The 20 hours of training we're required to take each year to learn how to do this.

All of this is before we actually want to do something with them or take them somewhere.

And if that is not enough, the state has the great idea that each April they do a new contract for their Medicaid provider. So, each April I have to go back to the pediatrician and get a referral to a specialist that my children have seen since birth. After receiving the referral I then have to go and see the specialist. I have 30 days from the time we get on the program to visit the pediatrician and the specialist for each kid. This means two unnecessary visits per child per year. That might not seem like a lot, but how many thousands of children are in foster care, gues who's paying for two extra visits? You are. This is why we want socialized medicine? I also have to take them in each year for a psychological evaluation. One is required for each foster kid every year, by law, there is no getting out of it. If that isn't bad enough, I have to take them in for an assessment prior to the psychological to see if they need one, we've already established that whether they need one or not they are getting one. Then following the assessment to see if they need something that they are required to get, we have to wait for approval to get it. This can take anywhere from 45 to 60 days. I cannot take them in for their assessment to see if they need one until the month that they are due for one, I am also required to get their evaluation in the month that they are due. I have been cited every year for not getting them the psychological care that they need in a timely manner.

This is the same with dental care. Most dentist won't schedule an appointment unless your current Medicaid card says dental checkup required. It doesn't say that until the month it is due. When is the last time you tried to get into a pediatric dentist? There is a six week waiting period at mine, even though I take all of my foster kids there every six months and have been doing so for the past four years. Luckily I now have a friend there and she just overrides the system to say I'll pay for it if Medicaid doesn't come through.

We also have to double lock our medication and knives. We have to separate our medicine into categories of prescription, non-prescription, psychotropic, topical. Each category must be locked separately. And let's say we'd like to cut our WIC cheese, it requires that we unlock a door and then unlock the lock box in which we keep our knives. We have to have thermometers in our fridge and freezer, to keep our WIC food at the proper temperature. And we have to get WIC. This requires monthly visits to WIC for each kid. We can't get the multiple months everybody else gets, because the kids might go home, even though they haven't for three years. God knows I'd really like to get one over on the WIC people and be able to get $60 worth of free food, which is exactly what I'll be thinking if they take the kids. I only go when they agree to give me the multiple months because quite frankly one trip to WIC ain't worth sixty bucks.

So, we are either stupid at math or we're not doing it for the money.

1 comment:

Maury said...

Amen Sister!!

I just scheduled an unnessecary evaluation on my 8 month old. They asked me why I was concerned enough to schedule it, and I said, "I'm not..but I was told he needed it, so I am doing it." She said OK...and scheduled it, no more questions.

Gas...I can't ever get reimbursed for last check for just 2 months was over $500, and it took me 4 months and lots of harrassing to get it.

I was also told I had to take my baby to the dentist when he is 1. So far, he doesn't even have any teeth at 8 1/2 months...I am like, R U Kidding me? Take him to the dentist in 3 months?

I didn't get my voucher check this past month. Come to find out, my case worker forgot to enter in a weekend of respite, went back 2 months later and entered it the day the checks went out, then for some reason we didn't get entered back instead of they sending us the money they owe us, they sent is a nasty letter telling us we owe them $320 of overpayment.....and everyone I talk to, says the have to "talk to someone else." Good grief!