More than 11,000 Virginians with developmental disabilities (DD) and their families are on waiting lists for home and community based services.    Thousands of children with developmental disabilities also face difficulty accessing education services in neighborhood schools.   Without appropriate, community-based supports, Virginians are at risk of expensive placements that isolate them from family, friends and other natural supports, violating civil rights afforded by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). 

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2017 Budget Priorities
More than 11,000 Virginians with developmental disabilities (DD) and their families are on waiting lists for home and community based services. Thousands of children with developmental disabilities also face difficulty accessing education services in neighborhood schools. Without appropriate, community-based supports, Virginians are at risk of expensive placements that isolate them from family, friends and other natural supports, violating civil rights afforded by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

DD WAIVER WAITING LIST
• REJECT Governor’s McAuliffe’s proposed $10 million cut in DD Waiver waiting list funding.

• Maximize DD Waiver funding and provide additional FIS Waivers to address the waiting list crisis, ensuring the Commonwealth serves as many individuals and families as possible:

  • 800 additional Family and Individual Support (FIS) Waivers for DD Waiver waiting list families
  • 250 Community Living (CL) Waivers for DD Waiver waiting list families
  • Language that allows DBHDS to create additional Waivers if cost savings are realized.

• Transition the 4,000 people with DD from the EDCD Waiver to the DD Waiver program, where their needs will be met with more appropriate services and supports. This action will reduce the waiting list by 36%.

• Uphold the commitment to ensure seamless transition between Waiver programs. Require that all Community Living Waiver slots that become available in FY18 due to turnover be provided to individuals and families in the DD Waiver program who have requested a “reserve” waiver slots.

IMPROVING OPERATIONS IN THE DD SYSTEM

• Require accountability and transparency regarding services for people with DD and their families.

  • Require DBHDS to submit a report detailing the needs of the waiting list by July 1 of each year.
  • Require DBHDS to report on the allocation of DD Waiver slots by October 1.
  • Require DBHDS to notify DD Waiver participants of their SIS score, tier and appeal rights.
  • Require DBHDS to implement the customized rate for people with complex needs without delay.

• Direct DBHDS to track and report statewide capacity in the area of integrated services and the effectiveness of the new reimbursement rate structure. The report should include stakeholder input and include recommendations for funding, technical assistance and other actions that must be taken to address inadequacies and ensure sufficient capacity.

  • Require an independent review of the SIS and tier formulas.

EDUCATION
• Direct VDOE to develop a long-range , statewide Inclusion Implementation Plan for children with developmental disabilities. The plan should include a report on current access to inclusive education in school districts across the Commonwealth. The plan should be developed in consultation with experts in inclusive education and systems change.

• Support recommendations in RD249 to ensure that students with developmental disabilities have appropriate services and supports in neighborhood schools.

  • Amend the Children’s Services Act to “carve out” and transfer CSA state pool funding for students with disabilities to the VDOE.
  • Authorize CSA to allow localities to apply for “demonstration grants” to design and implement promising strategies that focus on increasing flexibility of CSA and/or other resources made available to school divisions to address the needs of students with disabilities who might otherwise be served in private residential settings.
  • Direct VDOE to develop reporting requirements for private special education facilities that are equivalent to reporting requirements for public schools.

WORKFORCE IMPROVEMENT
• Request that Secretary of Health and Human Resources establish a “Workforce Improvement Taskforce” aimed at improving access to high quality personal care and community-based direct supports. The taskforce should include representatives of the aging, disability and behavioral health communities and will serve as a venue to address areas of common interest.

TRANSITION TO A COMMUNITY SYSTEM
• Complete the closure of the remaining two state training centers to fulfill the state’s commitment transition to a truly community based service system in response to the Department of Justice Settlement Agreement.

MANAGED CARE

• Continue to defer the enrollment of DD waiver participants into managed Medicaid long-term services and supports (LTSS) plans until Virginia reaches compliance with the terms of the Department of Justice Settlement Agreement and the CMS Rule.

The Arc of Virginia
2147 Staples Mill Road, Richmond, VA 23230
www.thearcofva.org
(804) 649-8481

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