Video: Octuplet mom getting public aid

msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 2/10/2009 8:59:59 AM ET 2009-02-10T13:59:59

Nadya Suleman, the mother of the octuplets born last month, gets $490 a month in food stamps, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday evening. Three of her first children also get federal supplemental security income because they are disabled, the Times reported.

Suleman's publicist, Michael Furtney, confirmed the information.

During an interview with Ann Curry on the TODAY show, Suleman denied being on welfare. (Msnbc.com is a joint venture of NBC Universal and Microsoft.)

Suleman told NBC News correspondent Ann Curry in an interview that she was not receiving welfare .Furtney said Suleman didn't consider the food stamps and SSI to be welfare.

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"In Nadya's view, the money that she gets from the food stamp program ... and the resources disabilities payments she gets for her three children are not welfare," he said. "They are part of programs designed to help people with need, and she does not see that as welfare."

Furtney declined to say what kinds of disabilities the three children have, the Times reported.

During the interview with Curry, Suleman said, "I'm not receiving help from the government. I'm not trying to expect anything from anybody. [I] just wanted to do it on my own. Any resources that someone would really, really want to help us, I will accept, I would embrace.”

Curry told Suleman that many people think she had the octuplets in the hope of making money off her story.

“That's funny how untrue that is,” Suleman said. “Money? Money is necessary to raise children. But it's — it's paper. It is paper. To me, it is superfluous in contrast to the importance of my kids.”

NBC chief medical editor Dr. Nancy Snyderman has estimated the cost of delivering the infants and caring for them until they are healthy enough to leave the hospital at $1.5 million to $3 million.

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