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Showing posts from January 8, 2017

Call to Action

  By Rylin Rodgers, Director, Board of Directors   I want to take a minute to talk to you parent to parent. I know you’re busy. I know you have a lot on your plate. I know you feel like you can’t do one more thing. But, I need you to do something. I need you to speak up on behalf of your child and other children. There are several threats to programs for our children at the federal level, primarily the ACA and Medicaid. Many of you depend on the provisions of the Affordable Care Act: No exclusions of pre-exisiting conditions No cap on lifetime limits A prohibition against rescinding coverage when someone gets sick ABA and other services provided by marketplace plans The plan is to repeal the Affordable Care Act. I know it’s not perfect, but we have very few details about what the replacement would be, if anything. If the ACA matters to your family, you need to share your story with your Representative and Senators. They need to know why it’s important to you. Here’s a basic

IN Legislative Session: Policy Updates

From Indiana Association of United Ways: The 2017 legislative session is underway The  Indiana General Assembly  has begun, and committee meetings are being scheduled.  The last day for bills to get filed is today, and more than 840 bills have already been filed.  This session is a "long session" where lawmakers will decide the state's next two-year budget which is typically about $30 billion.  Legislators will make tough funding decisions on state government services including education, infrastructure and public safety.  Links to help you follow are below:  WFYI's  Following Along in the Legislative Session Standing Committee Rosters Senate Committee Calendar ,  House Committee Calendar Bills for the 2017 Session IaUW's  Budget Tracking  for Key Human Services Programs IaUW Bill Tracking List Governor Holcomb prioritizes economy and the workforce, infrastructure and attacking the drug epidemic The newly  inaugurated  Governor H

Transitioning from ABA to School

The Institute’s Indiana Resource Center for Autism has developed a checklist that focuses on student transition from ABA programs to school programs. Factors for a successful transition include skills the child/student has gained, how they were prepared for the transition process, the relationships between the ABA program/provider and the school district, and how the school is prepared to receive the child. Transition Checklist: Moving From ABA Programs to School Programs builds upon the information from the article entitled Transitioning from ABA Programs to School Programs and to provide some additional guidance.

Protect Mental Health Care

Last night, the Senate took the first step towards repeal of health care reform. Health care reform, otherwise known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and/or Obamacare, made several changes to federal laws which have especially benefited people with mental health and addiction needs. These changes include: Made mental health and addiction treatment a benefit that all insurance plans must fully cover Required insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions Allowed young people to stay on their parents’ family insurance plan until 26 years old Increased access to individuals who previously were not able to access coverage, through the exchange, Medicaid Improved coordination of mental, behavioral, and physical medical care for people The House is poised to take similar action  tomorrow . Any changes to the Affordable Care Act must keep these priorities in place. Right now, more than ever, we need you to contact your Member of Congress and tell them you

Senate Passes Budget Resolution: Focus on ACA repeal

from Community Catalyst: Early this morning, the  Senate voted 51-48 mostly along party lines to pass the budget resolution  that includes instructions to repeal major parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This completes the first step in the process to repeal and delay, which would strip health care coverage away from 30 million people and consumer protections from millions more. ( See our recent alert  for a refresher on the process.) While this new development moves them closer to a vote on repeal,  our message is working.  Over the past two weeks, we have seen  several Republicans speak publicly  about concerns regarding repeal that does not include a simultaneous plan for replacement. In response, and in order to keep up the momentum we have gained so far,  we must continue to generate as much noise as possible  through earned media, social media and high-visibility public events. Additionally, we know that the public and Congress are watching the enrollment numbers this open

Agenda for the 115th Congress: Focus on the ACA

from Family Voices, Ntl: On January 3, the members of the new Congress were sworn into office and the 115 th Congress convened for the first of its two, year-long sessions. This Congress includes 53 new Representatives and seven new Senators. Republicans control both chambers, with a 52-48 majority in the Senate and a 241-194 majority in the House. 2017 Agenda The president-elect and Republican congressional leaders have made repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA, or "Obamacare") a top priority for Congress (more below). They have also announced their intention to drastically alter the nature of the Medicaid program by turning it into a block grant or capping federal payments on a per-beneficiary basis. At the end of this fiscal year ( September 30, 2017 ), funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) will expire, as will authorization and funding for the Maternal, Infant and Early Education Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, and Family-to-Family Health

Indiana lawmakers take up wide range of health care legislation

from IBJ: The Indiana General Assembly is back in session, wading its way through an enormous amount of legislation from road funding to firearms rights. Of course, there’s a smattering of health care legislation that could add consumer protections for patients, expand insurance coverage to infertile couples and provide hospitals news rights for restraining difficult patients. At least a dozen bills are winding through each house that would affect patients, insurers, health-care providers or public health officials. In this issue, we’ll take a look at some bills originating in the House that we’re keeping any eye on. Next time, we’ll look at bills originating in the Senate. So without further ado: House Bill 1011 (Rep. Wes Culver):  Tired of wondering what you might be charged for a doctor’s visit or a hospital stay? This bill would require health care providers, starting in 2018, to publish and provide patients in advance the charges for procedures, except for those offer

Act Now to Protect Health Care

From Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities: ACT NOW TO PROTECT HEALTH CARE Congressional leaders have declared that one of their first goals in the new Congress is to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA or Obamacare) and “replace” it.  While Congress has passed many bills to repeal the ACA in the past, it was clear that President Obama would veto them.  But this is not the case with President-elect Donald Trump who says he will sign an ACA repeal bill.  The Senate is planning to pass a budget that will begin the process of repealing the ACA as soon as JANUARY 11.   This is the first step in taking health care away before having a plan to replace it. We must educate our Members of Congress  before January 11 th  about why the ACA is so important to everyone, but especially to people with disabilities. There are key provisions in the ACA that support the health and well-being of people with disabilities that we cannot lose: Because of the ACA, heal