(WWLP) – A second state audit of the Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund found that since the last audit five years ago, wait times for application processing got longer.

The second look at the program is part of an ongoing effort to eliminate barriers to public assistance services.

The first audit in 2017, found reimbursement times were too long for families seeking financial help with devastating medical bills for their children, that are not covered by insurance.

Since then, the average wait time has increased by 11 days, to an average waiting period of more than 300 days.

State Auditor Suzanne Bump called the findings “dismaying” and she hopes this time their recommendations are taken to heart.