Last night, the Advocacy Department was asked for some additional background information on yesterday’s action alert. I thought it would be good to share it with everyone. If you still haven’t done the action, there is no time to lose! The link to the alert is at the bottom of this. And please feel free to share it with your online contacts. Thanks!
Advocacy Department Supervisor
• The Disability Community has been fighting to create an alternative to institutional placement for nearly 24 years. Although we have not been able to end the institutional bias at the national level, we created a new state plan option called the Community First Choice (CFC) Option. CFC creates a new mechanism for states to provide community-based attendant services and supports for people with disabilities, regardless of age or disability. Once selected, this new option changes state Medicaid policy so every person who meets the level of care for institutional placement in a nursing facility, intermediate care facility or institution for mental disease has the right to live and receive services and supports in the community.
• CFC requires states to provide assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) and health related tasks (like medication administration, tube feeding, and vent care) to assure that people have the services and supports they need to live in the community.
• Although New York State has an Nurse Practice Act (NPA) exemption for its consumer-directed program, it needs to amend the NPA to allow attendants under a more traditional agency model to provide assistance with health related tasks with training and supervision from a nurse.
Impact of Not Securing the NPA Amendment
• New York won’t be able to broadly implement CFC and people with all types of disabilities – whether or not they need assistance with health-related tasks – won’t have a right to receive services and supports in the community.
• People with dementia – who currently have extremely limited community-based options in New York – will continue to be forced into nursing facilities.
• Families of individuals with developmental disabilities who would have received services and supports under CFC will continue to languish on waiting lists for assistance.
• People with mental health disabilities won’t receive CFC services and supports needed to be successful in living independently and will continue to remain in – or cycle in and out of – expensive institutional settings.
• New York State won’t generate approximately $340 million dollars a year in extra federal funds from the enhanced federal funding associated with CFC.
• Governor Cuomo included language in his budget bills to authorize implementing the Community First Choice Option, amending the Nurse Practice Act, and creating a workgroup of all interested parties to develop the specific operational decisions. When his administration became aware that the published language needed to be revised to implement CFC, they agreed to support a slightly modified proposal.
• The NYS Senate incorporated the modified NPA amendment language in its budget resolution.
• The NYS Assembly, however, failed to make the needed changes. Assemblywoman Glick – who chairs the Assembly Higher Education Committee which is responsible for – won’t support the amending the NPA because the language doesn’t define specifically which tasks attendants will be able to perform and what education, training and supervision will be required. She has not identified any alternative language which would allow the state to implement CFC and end the institutional bias
What YOU Can Do!
Contact Assemblywoman Deborah Glick and urge her to support the right of New Yorkers with disabilities to live in the community and not be forced into institutions by supporting the Senate language amending the Nurse Practice Act as part of the state budget negotiations or working with the Disability Community to craft improved language. Budget negotiation in New York are underway, so she needs to hear from you ASAP!
Albany office: 518-455-4841
NYC District office: 212-674-5153
Circulate the CDR CapWiz Alert: