Supporters Donate to Octuplets' Web Site, California Could Foot Hospital Bill

The public relations firm representing Nadya Suleman, mother of the famous California octuplets, launched a Web site that allows visitors to donate to the family.

"The response has been excellent," Mike Furtney, a spokesman for the family, told ABC News. According to Furtney, "hundreds" of people have generously responded.

"Actually, a farmer in the Midwest said, 'They can live with us,'" Furtney said. "There have been many similar spots."

Others, he said, have been "very direct and vocal" with criticism.

"We understand that people will not agree with us ... [but] this is a nation known for its charitable behavior, generosity and tolerance. We hope people that share that thought will work with us to help Nadya and the children."


Would you donate to the Suleman family? Click here to cast your vote.

The Web site, called the Nadya Suleman Family Web site, lists the pictures, names and weights of all eight newborns and allows supporters to donate money directly online or send items to a Los Angeles address provided by Suleman's public relations representative, the Killeen Furtney Group.

"We thank you from the bottom of our hearts," reads a note on the Web site from "Nadya Suleman and children." "[The babies] are all healthy and growing stronger by the day."

The Web site's launch comes after reports emerged concerning the staggering financial burden the octuplets' family may lay on the state of California, including a possible $1 million hospital bill.

Suleman's octuplets, born Jan. 26, are expected to stay in the hospital for several weeks under close watch before being released.

The bill is the latest facet of the growing controversy surrounding the octuplets' birth that also includes accusations by the octuplets' grandfather that their mother falsified birth certificates by listing a fake name, David Solomon, as the kids' father.

Falsifying birth certificates is a felony, punishable by a maximum of three years in jail.

Like the Babies, Costs Multiply

Premature babies cost an average of 15 times more that full-term babies in their first year of life, generally accruing more than $40,000 in bills for extended hospital stays, more outpatient visits and generally more medical needs, according to a 2005 report by the March of Dimes.

March of Dimes medical director Dr. Alan Fleischman expects Suleman's record-breaking eight babies, who were born nine weeks premature, to ring up a hospital medical bill "somewhere between $700,000 and $1 million."

It's a bill that could fall on the state of California, which is $42 billion in debt.

Suleman's octuplets qualify for Medi-Cal, the state's health-care program for the poor, meaning the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Bellflower, where the octuplets are staying, can request reimbursement for treatment. According to the Los Angeles Times, they've done just that.

"With our economy the way it is, with California going to hell in a handbasket, why should I be excited about this?" one of Suleman's neighbors, an 87-year-old woman, told "Good Morning America" a few days after the babies' birth.

Under Medi-Cal, Kaiser Permanente could already be eligible for around $150,000, conservatively, for the babies' stay so far, not including delivery that included 46 staff members and four delivery rooms, the Times reported. If they stay for 12 weeks, which is a possibility, that number is likely to climb north of $800,000.

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...