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Showing posts from March 22, 2020

Coronavirus Resources from Benefits.gov

Many people are experiencing unexpected difficulties during the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Benefits.gov is here to help. On Benefits.gov, you can find government benefits related to unemployment assistance, healthcare, and food and nutrition. You can also take our Benefit Finder to find additional benefits you may be eligible for. For more information on the coronavirus, refer to Coronavirus.gov, offered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the White House. Benefits.gov does not administer benefits or accept applications for benefits. While we cannot answer questions about benefit applications, cases, or personal situations, we can help guide you on the next steps in the application process. For application information, refer to the Application Process or 'Quick Info' sections on each benefit page.

FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE AND PAID SICK LEAVE – TALK TO THE DEPT. OF LABOR

From now through March 29, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) invites you to participate in a national online dialogue called "Providing Expanded Family and Medical Leave and Paid Sick Leave to Employees Affected by COVID-19 National Online Dialogue." You're invited to share your ideas on how USDOL can help employers and employees understand their responsibilities and rights, respectively, under the expanded family and medical leave and paid sick leave provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

New statewide map available for Hoosiers seeking food assistance during COVID-19 pandemic

New, interactive online tool will make it easier for families to find food resources near home; site will be updated to reflect current openings and closures INDIANAPOLIS– The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration, in partnership with the state’s  food banks, the Indy Hunger Network and Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, has developed a statewide, interactive map that will help Hoosiers seeking food assistance find what they need. The map is online here, and will be prominently featured at www.fssa.in.gov. The map can be used on desktop/laptop computers and mobile devices. “Many Hoosiers’ situations have changed as a result of our state’s important and necessary response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic,” said Jennifer Sullivan, M.D., M.P.H., FSSA Secretary. “We know there is a significant need for families – many of whom have never needed assistance before. We hope this tool helps them locate resources to meet their food and nutrition needs during this crisis and in the futu…

Webinars for families and caregivers

The Division of Aging, in collaboration with the Bureau of Developmental Disabilities Services, is hosting a series of webinars for families and caregivers to inform and assist during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are greatly appreciative for the partnership with The Arc of Indiana, Family Voices Indiana and IPMG in their work and efforts to assist us in bringing this much needed information to the families and caregivers who are managing the challenges during this time to meet the support needs of their family and loved ones. Please see the following for more information and how to register:

Monday, March 30, 2020, 2-3 p.m. EDT, BDDS family update BDDS will be hosting a family and caregiver webinar that will provide updates and information on the effects of the current COVID-19 pandemic to BDDS services which include the Family Support Waiver, the Community Integration and Habilitation Waiver and Supervised Group Living.   Panelists:             Heather Dane, Bureau of Developmental Disab…

Waiver Redesign virtual meetings and listening sessions cancelled

From DDRS

Due to the activities and circumstances that have evolved due to the COVID-19 pandemic the Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services Bureau of Developmental Disabilities Services find it necessary to temporarily pause our waiver redesign efforts. While it is difficult at this time to determine the extent of the effects of COVID-19 to the individuals and families in our services, we hope this will only be a brief disruption to the timeline and our collective efforts. During this time the Human Services Research Institute will continue with their work related to the redesign. This will allow BDDS to quickly transition our focus back to the important work of designing and creating waivers that assist individuals and families in living their vision of a good life. Consequently, the following virtual meetings and listening sessions have been cancelled: Provider Feedback Sessions March 30, 2020, 1 to 3 p.m. EDTApril 6, 2020, 1 to 3 p.m. EDTApril 13, 2020, 1 to 3 p.m. EDTBui…

BDDS temporary policy changes related to COVID-19 and Appendix K

The Office of Medicaid Policy and Planning is preparing to submit Indiana’s Appendix K: Emergency Preparedness and Response waiver amendments to the following Indiana Medicaid Home and Community Based Services waivers: the Family Supports Waiver and the Community Integration and Habilitation Waiver to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for approval. If approved, these temporary Appendix K waiver amendments will have a March 1, 2020 effective date. The Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services Bureau of Developmental Disabilities Services submitted the FSW and CIH Appendix K waiver amendments in response to the emergence and spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the serious health risk it poses to Indiana’s intellectual and developmental disabilities population. Governor Eric Holcomb declared a statewide public health emergency on March 6, 2020, related to the spread of COVID-19 in Indiana. In advance of CMS’ final approval, BDDS is implementing the followi…

Child Mental Health Wraparound service delivery related to the COVID-19 pandemic

The Division of Mental Health and Addiction has been reviewing policies, Indiana administrative code and federal requirements for Child Mental Health Wraparound service delivery. Our goal is maximum flexibility. While we wait for authority to waive federal and IAC requirements, the following policy requirements have been updated pending further notice:
For youth who are home due to school closures, including e-learning, providers may provide services during normal school hours as agreed to by the provider and caregiverChild and Family Team Meetings may be conducted via video conferencingSignatures for plans of care, pick lists, WFI EZ consent, rights and attestation form, releases of information, initial eligibility reviews and annual eligibility reviews are not required at this time. Verbal consent will substitute for signatures. Consent must be verified by a second person from the wraparound facilitation agency. On the form’s signature line, please date and indicate that verbal cons…

Looking for mental health or substance use care during the COVID-19 Pandemic?

From Mental Health America of Indiana

EmberWood Center is providing in-home mental health and substance use therapy to new and existing clients on home computers, tablets and phones.In response to the current COVID-19 pandemic and following guidelines of CDC, the Governor of Indiana, and the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addictions, the EmberWood Center has established a new protocol for treating our clients. In-person direct services have been suspended until further notice from the CDC, and tele-therapy will be offered instead. Clients can participate via their phones, tablets, or computers and they will be contacted with instructions by their counselors.Please, be patient with us as we are navigating this new method of services provision and we are prioritizing our higher-need clients. Our staff is checking voicemails and will return calls as we receive them. Please, opt for contacting emberwoodcenter@mhai.net with any questions or requests for services. Also follow the Embe…

COVID-19 Resources for Hoosiers with Disabilities

From the Governor's Council for People with Disabilities

GCPD wants you to know that the State of Indiana is still open for business. The Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services is working to make sure that direct care staff are able to do their jobs and that people have access to the funds necessary to continue providing supports. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Indiana State Department of Health are the two best places to receive updates on COVID-19 and how developments may impact you. We have listed these resources and more on our website. We will be updating this as new information becomes available.
Currently, there are resources relating to:
Indiana-Specific ResourcesFederal ResourcesInformation and Resources for People with Disabilities, Caregivers and ProvidersCommunity Support and Self-Advocacy OrganizationsInformal ResourcesVirtual Activities for Young and Old
Keep an eye on this page for future updates!

Food Considered a "Qualified Disability Expense" from an ABLE Account

On March 13, 2020, the Social Security Administration (SSA) clarified that food is considered a “qualified disability expense” from an ABLE account.
“For ABLE purposes, food is considered a qualified disability expense (basic living expense).” To learn more about ABLE accounts and other qualified disability expenses, visit https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0501130740

Information relevant to special education concerns of families with disabilities in Indiana

From IN*SOURCE

As we all hunker down andschools statewide are closed until at least May 1 in an attempt to lessen the impact of COVID-19, we wanted to get some information out relevant to special education concerns of families with disabilities in Indiana:


Will special education and related services continue if my child’s school is closed due to COVID-19?


If your child’s school is closed with no class in session through e-learning or expanded learning opportunities, special education and related services are not required to be provided during the time of closure; however, once class is back in session, the school “must make every effort” to provide special education and related services and compensatory education may be considered by the case conference committee.


If your child’s school is closed with class in session through e-learning or expanded learning opportunities, students with disabilities must have equal access to the same learning opportunities and be provided, “to the greates…