‘I don’t have money to pay for her medical bills,’ Oklahoma baby left without health insurance after months-long battle over a birth certificate

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An Oklahoma mother’s baby is left without health insurance after waiting months for her daughter’s birth certificate. 

“I’ve done everything on my end that I could possibly do,” said Ashley Mehr.

Since July, Ashley Mehr told KFOR she has tried to get hold of the state’s vital records and has even paid $40 for the birth certificate and express shipping.

Ashley Mehr and child. Image courtesy Ashley Mehr

Mehr has received $300 worth of medical bills for her baby because Soonercare, the state’s low-income insurance, has no record of her in the system.

KFOR attempted to speak with Vital Records to see why the process took five months. We were told to contact the Oklahoma State Health Department. 

“It’s frustrating. It’s annoying. I shouldn’t have to do that,” said Mehr. “Not getting the answers is not making it any easier.”

Despite months of trying to get answers, Mehr said she finally got a call after KFOR got involved.

Mehr told News 4 OSDH wants her soon-to-be ex-husband and Harmoni’s biological father to sign documents for the birth certificate to be released.

She said no one told her any of it during her months asking why the birth certificate was delayed.

Ashley Mehr’s child now. Courtesy Ashley Mehr

Mehr stated that Harmoni’s dad and her ex-husband live in New York, which will make it harder to receive the signed documentation needed to get Harmoni’s birth certificate. 

We asked the state health department for another way to move the process faster, and a spokesperson for Vital Records released the following statement: 

“We are in contact with the mother and working with her to obtain the information necessary to issue the record, as well as exploring potential options to help expedite the process.”

Mehr told KFOR she fears she may have to go more months without Harmoni having healthcare.

“No mother should have to stress or worry about something we fill out at the time of birth,” said Mehr.

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