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September 30, 2014

Birth Control Options Stressed For Teens With Disabilities - DisabiltyScoop
Doctors are getting a reminder that adolescents with developmental disabilities are interested in sex too and their need for guidance and contraception should not be overlooked.

What Happens When Sheltered Workshops Close? - DisabiltyScoop
Vermont closed its last sheltered workshop in 2002. Today, the employment rate of people with developmental disabilities in the New England state is twice the national average.
September 29, 2014

Mass Adult Day Health Alliance Acquired by Civitis Solutions Inc. - PRNewswire
BOSTON, Sept. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mass Adult Day Health Alliance, the largest provider of adult day health programs for elders in Massachusetts, announced today that it has been acquired by Civitis Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: CIVI), a national organization of local...

Merck Partners with eSSENTIAL Accessibility to offer app for people with disabilities - PRNewswire
Global healthcare leader now offers a free app that makes it easier for people with disabilities to browse its websites TORONTO, Sept. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - eSSENTIAL Accessibility is proud to announce its partnership with Merck, the global healthcare leader working to help the...

Young People With Autism More Sedentary, Study Finds - DisabiltyScoop
Children with autism are far less physically active than their typically-developing peers, researchers say.

Medicaid: States Cannot 'Delay Or Deny' Autism Treatment - Autism Speaks - Advocasy

Federal government further clarifies directive on ABA benefits

September 29, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC (September 29, 2014) -- The federal government has issued guidance to states emphasizing that they can neither delay nor deny medically necessary autism treatments, such as ABA, through their Medicaid programs for individuals up to age 21.

The message was delivered in FAQs posted September 24 regarding the July 7 Informational Bulletin issued by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) concerning autism benefits states must provide through the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) program. While no specific deadline is set forth in the FAQs, "CMS believes states should complete this work expeditiously and should not delay or deny provision of medically necessary services."

In addition to questions on timing, there was confusion among some states because the July Bulletin did not explicitly state that ABA, the most well-accepted and efficacious therapy for individuals with autism, was a required treatment. In the FAQ's, "CMS made clear that while it did not single out ABA as a mandated treatment, just as it does not mandate other specific treatments, like chemotherapy for children with cancer, all care that is medically necessary for an individual must be provided," said Dan Unumb, executive director of the Autism Speaks Legal Resource Center.

According to the FAQs, this obligation to provide all medically necessary services that can be covered under Medicaid is part of the states' “long-standing EPSDT obligations” to children from birth to 21. Additional information about the states' EPSDT obligations is available HERE.

In the case of autism, medically necessary care includes ABA, which CMS has already indicated is a coverable service observed Unumb. "As indicated in professional literature and as held by numerous court cases, there is no question that ABA is medically necessary for many children with autism and therefore it must be made available based on individual determinations of medical necessity," he said.

Some states have also raised concerns over the cost of providing Medicaid coverage of ABA. “This is not a new issue,” said Unumb. “In almost all of the three dozen states that have mandated coverage for private insurance, nearly every state initially over-estimated the cost of providing ABA, sometimes by more than 1,000 percent.”

Unumb also said it is important to keep in mind the cost-savings of providing ABA. "Studies have shown that providing treatment to children ultimately saves the states taxpayer money by reducing the need for special education and other services and lowering long-term care costs when children reach adulthood."

The FAQs further spell out that while Medicaid State Plan Amendments are not a prerequisite to implement additional mandatory EPSDT coverage, they are strongly encouraged as a means to include the menu of services for ASD treatment as part of the State Plan's comprehensive written statement of services. The FAQs also discuss the relationship between EPSDT services and waiver services and the transition of medically necessary services from limited waiver coverage to broad state plan coverage for EPSDT-eligible individuals.

September 26, 2014

New Details Emerge On Autism Treatment Mandate - DisabiltyScoop
Federal officials are taking steps to clarify new requirements surrounding Medicaid coverage of autism treatments.

Increasingly, Adults With Down Syndrome Face Alzheimer's - DisabiltyScoop
A growing number of families are struggling to care for aging adults with Down syndrome who also have Alzheimer's disease and are losing hard-won skills.

Eight Nonprofit Organizations Will Share Kidzmet's Company Sales - PRNewswire
SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Sept. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Kidzmet founder Jen Lilienstein announced today that her company will donate 25% of company sales of books and memberships from September 28, 2014 to January 17, 2015 to eight learning advocacy groups committed to...
September 25, 2014

AUCD2014 Hotel Rooms are Filling Quickly - AUCD
Hotel rooms at the Renaissance are filling up fast! Please book your room as soon as possible to ensure a space at the hotel. See the hotel page for more information on rates, how to book and the cut-off date for our negotiated room rate. Book yours today!

2014 Trainee Travel Scholarships - AUCD
AUCD is pleased to announce the availability of 15 travel scholarships of up to $400 each AND 5 volunteer scholarships of up to $400 each to support AUCD Trainees in attending the 2012 AUCD Conference.

All New MV-1 Wheelchair Accessible Minivan - PRNewswire

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Better Life Mobility Center is thrilled to offer its customers new and improved models of MV-1 mobility vans by Mobility Ventures LLC, an AM General Company. This year's model has been improved in many aspects, also coming equipped with new...

Due Process Hearings On Decline - DisabiltyScoop
Fewer special education disputes between parents and school districts are escalating to due process hearings, a new government report finds.
September 24, 2014

Bancroft Taps IBM to Transform the Classroom Experience with Mobile - PRNewswire

ARMONK, N.Y. and HADDONFIELD, N.J., Sept. 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today it is working with Bancroft, a major provider of specialized services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, to manage an innovative, cloud-based educational program....

Taking Iron During Pregnancy May Cut Autism Risk In Half - DisabiltyScoop
A nutrient deficiency that's common among pregnant women could impact the odds of giving birth to a child with autism, researchers say.
September 23, 2014

Study Points To More Reliable Autism Test - DisabiltyScoop
Assessing how quickly the brain responds to sights and sounds could offer a more precise and earlier method to diagnose autism, new research suggests.

Lawsuits Often Fail To Satisfy Either Side Of ADA Coin - DisabiltyScoop
No matter which side they're on, the people involved in disability access lawsuits seem to have one thing in common: supreme frustration.

AUCD Welcomes Leon Barnett as Program Specialist for the OSEP Promise TA Center - AUCD
Leon Barnett received his Master's degree in Leadership for School, Family, and Community Collaboration from The Johns Hopkins University. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Integrative Studies with a concentration in Public and Community Engagement from George Mason University.

AUCD Welcomes Jessica Finkel as Program Assistant - AUCD
Jessica Finkel assists with general office and administrative operations. She is currently working on her Master's degree in Public Policy with a concentration in Nonprofit Management and Leadership at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a minor in Biology from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Aeroplan Partners with eSSENTIAL Accessibility to Offer App for People with Disabilities - PRNewswire
MONTREAL, Sept. 23, 2014 /CNW/ - eSSENTIAL Accessibility is proud to announce its partnership with Aeroplan, Canada's premier coalition loyalty program. Through the partnership, Aeroplan now offers a desktop app that empowers people with physical disabilities to access
Last updated : September 30, 2014 - 01:13:07
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