Setting Standards for Delivering High-Quality Care to Veterans with Invisible Wounds

by Natalie Ernecoff, Carrie M. Farmer, Matthew F. Amidon, Margaret C. Harrell, Jennifer Silva: For Complete Post, Click Here…

For veterans living with invisible wounds of war, care delivery organizations must define and measure standards for high-quality care. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, traumatic brain injury (TBI), substance use disorders, and other “invisible wounds” are common among post-9/11 veterans and can interfere with their employment, family life, engagement with their communities, and overall well-being. Further, many veterans receive care at non-VA facilities, though the quality and programs in non-VA clinical settings are difficult to assess. Although there are effective treatments for these conditions, many veterans face barriers to accessing high-quality care. Therefore, care delivery organizations could work to ensure that the care and resources they provide are of high quality.

As a first step, the Veteran Wellness Alliance, a coalition of veteran peer network organizations and clinical provider organizations supported by the George W. Bush Institute, previously collaborated with RAND researchers to develop a shared definition of high-quality care consisting of four pillars: veteran-centered care, accessible care, evidence-based care, and outcome monitoring to improve access to high-quality care for post-9/11 veterans with invisible wounds.

Federal Courts Deliver Victories for Voters With Disabilities

By Matt Vasilogambros: For Complete Post, Click Here…

Paralyzed from the neck down, downtown Milwaukee resident Martha Chambers has difficulty voting.

She can use a mouth stick to mark her ballot and sign her name on an absentee ballot, but she has no way of folding the ballot, slipping it back in the envelope or returning it to the mailbox.

Driven by its conservative majority, the Wisconsin Supreme Court in July outlawed assistance in the absentee voting process. After that decision, Chambers worried that her caregiver — who also gets her out of bed in the morning, brushes her teeth and puts her clothes on for her — could become a criminal for ensuring she can participate in the democratic process. Chambers said she was effectively disenfranchised.

The ruling in Wisconsin was one of two big legal victories in federal court for voters with disabilities this summer. In June, U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman struck down parts of a Texas law that forbid certain assistance for voters with disabilities and voters with limited English proficiency.

The cases are part of the larger, ongoing battle over voting access. More than 20 Republican-led states enacted a wave of barriers to the ballot process in the past two years, making voting — especially by mail — more difficult in the name of preventing voter fraud, which is rare in the United States and did not affect the results of the 2020 presidential election. Voting rights advocates have challenged many of the laws. Protecting voting rights for people with disabilities is one of the few areas in which they’ve had success — and even found some consensus.

After many difficult months of voters with disabilities trying to navigate restrictive new voting laws, these legal victories are welcomed, said Rebecca Cokley, program officer for U.S. disability rights at the Ford Foundation, a New York-based philanthropy that provides grants to organizations that lead voting efforts for people with disabilities.

Final Public Charge Rule Adds Critical Protections for Immigrant Families

By Katherine Villeda, Colin Reusch: For Complete Post, Click Here…

Late last week following guidance from the Biden administration, the Department of Homeland Security released the final Public Charge Rule, taking an important step forward to undo the harm caused by the previous administration’s rule which significantly threatened access to critical services for immigrants and their families. This final rule adds critical protections and affirms that immigrants and their families can safely access health, housing and nutritional programs to which they are entitled to without fear of consequences to their immigration status.     

Here is what advocates need to know:  

  • The final rule goes into effect Dec. 22, 2022. Between now and then, the field guidance from the 1999 rule will continue to be followed.  
  • Immigrants and their families, including citizen children, can safely access non-cash health, nutritional and housing programs they qualify for, such as Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and Section 8 housing assistance. Benefits received from these programs will not count towards the public charge test. 
  • Applying for benefits, being approved for benefits, assisting someone else to apply for benefits, or being in the same household as someone who receives benefits will not be counted towards the applicant’s immigration application.  
  • The only programs that can be considered in a public charge determination are Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash assistance, state and locally funded cash assistance for income maintenance, and long-term institutional care paid for by Medicaid (this excludes short term or rehabilitative care and home and community-based services). However, getting these benefits does not automatically make someone a public charge. Other factors such as when benefits were received, length of receipt of benefits, education, skills, income and affidavit of support will be taken into account before making a public charge determination. If a public charge determination is made, immigration officers must now state their reasons as to why someone is a public charge.  

A further analysis of the final rule can be found here.   

At a wheelchair rally, Inglis House residents protest the sale of their home

by Harold Brubaker: For Complete Post, Click Here…

ngd-Financial capitalism at its worst…

Residents fear the loss of a way of life if the facility is sold to Tryko Partners.

A group of Inglis House residents took to the sidewalk in West Philadelphia Friday afternoon to protest the planned sale of the home they deeply appreciate to a for-profit organization from Brick, N.J.

They said they fear the loss of so much they love about the nursing home at 2600 Belmont Ave., which specializes in the care of people with paralysis and impaired mobility. High-quality food, computers, museum visits, music, and shopping trips — things they may not find at other homes that can accommodate their physical needs — are some of the amenities that residents dread losing if the sale happens.

“Now it’s going to change, and not for the better,” said Annette Davis, who has lived there for eight years.

Inglis Foundation announced the sale of Inglis House in July to Tryko Partners, a fast-growing for-profit that already owns 10 facilities in the Philadelphia region. Inglis management said at the time that the nursing home loses so much money that it will eventually jeopardize the entire organization, which also provides community services and develops low-income housing for individuals with disabilities who don’t need nursing-home levels of care.

A contentious issue is the Inglis Foundation’s $240 million endowment. Management says only a slice of it is restricted to the nursing home and will continue to support the nursing home after the sale.

Family Caregiver Services by State

From The Family Caregiver Alliance: For Complete Post, Click Here…

Our Family Caregiver Services by State tool helps you locate public and nonprofit programs and services nearby, no matter where you live in the United States. Resources include government health and disability programs, legal, in-home, out-of-home care, and more. Caregiving is challenging, but there are resources to help. Choose a state in the dropdown menu, or click on a state in the map for state-specific resources, then filter by topic to help you find what resources are available to help with your situation.

Select a state…

10 TikToks to Watch If You’re Struggling With Suicidal Thoughts Right Now

By Sky Taylor: For Complete Post, Click Here…

If you experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. If you need support right now, you can call, text, or chat the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988, or text HOME to 741-741 to reach the Crisis Text Line if you are in the U.S. A list of crisis centers around the world can be found here.

When people are struggling, especially with their mental health, we tell them to reach out. Talk to someone. Tell a trusted adult. But the unfortunate reality is that not everyone has a person they can text when suicidal thoughts get too loud and the pain gets too heavy. Even if someone has a great support system, when you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts, feeling like a burden can make it incredibly difficult to reach out. And yes, crisis lines exist, but they have a time and a place (and plenty that needs fixing). Sometimes you just need the face of another person who understands, spending 60 seconds with you, being supportive and empathetic.

That’s why I’m thankful for TikTok, and especially these videos. People can say what they will about screen time and mindless scrolling, but there are far more destructive coping mechanisms, and I’m certainly not one to judge. I know how lonely and isolating living with suicidal thoughts can be. I can’t tell you how many nights I’ve watched these videos on repeat, and how many times they’ve saved me. If you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts right now, I want you to know I see you. And I hope you find as much comfort and support in these videos as I have. Save them, bookmark them, come back to them when you need to, they’ll be here.

1. POV: You see us struggling with suicidal thoughts.

A wildly popular mental health advocate with years of lived experience, Jazz Thornton is always there to remind you the world is better with you in it. The way she uses her story to help so many who are struggling with such dark thoughts, is inspiring. This point-of-view style video, talking di

Society of Disabled Oracles

From Disability Visibility Project: For Complete Post, Click Here…

DISABILITY IS A GENERATIVE FORCE.
IT’S MAGIC. IT REALLY TEACHES
ME TO BE MORE ‘THOUGITFUL
AND AWARE OF MYSELF
AND MY BODY. MY BODY-MIND IN
COMMUNITY. AND, AS ALICE WONG
HAS PUT SO BEAUTIFULLY,
DISABLED PLOPLE
ARE ORACLES.
Via ALEX LOCUST – GLAMPUTEE

Hello everyone! I wrote about disabled oracles in the past such as a talk I gave on August 6, 2020, “The Last Disabled Oracle,” as part of Assembly for the Future, a project of The Things We Did Next collaboration based in Melbourne, Australia.

Here we are now in 2022 and the wisdom of disabled oracles is needed more than ever. I am proud to share my latest project, Society of Disabled Oracles, a collaboration with Aimi Hamraie and Jen White-Johnson.

This is a website featuring ‘telegrams’ by disabled oracles to the world in the form of text, video, audio, and graphic art. A living chorus and archive of disabled wisdom from the past, present and future.

Share your oracular truths with the world!

COVID-19 Mortality Burden and Comorbidity Patterns Among Decedents with and without Intellectual and Developmental Disability in the US

By Scott D.Landes, Julia M.Finan, Margaret A.Turk: For Complete Post, Click Here…

COVID-19 was the leading cause of death among decedents with IDD in 2020, compared to the 3rd leading cause among decedents without IDD. The proportion of deaths from COVID-19 was also higher for decedents with compared to without IDD. Comorbidities resulting from COVID-19 were similar among decedents with and without IDD, but there were some differences among reported pre-existing conditions, notably higher rates of hypothyroidism and seizures among decedents with IDD.

The COVID-19 mortality burden was greater for people with than without IDD during the first year of the pandemic. The continued practice of postmortem diagnostic overshadowing prevents analyzing whether this difference continues through today. Action is needed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to mitigate this data inequity. Out of an abundance of caution, medical providers should carefully monitor symptoms among COVID-19 patients with IDD diagnosed with hypothyroidism and/or seizures.

10 Signs of Unresolved Trauma You Would Never Think Of

By Gillian May: For Complete Post, Click Here…

For example, being bad with direction or needing everything to stay the same may be signs of unresolved trauma.

Let’s look at 10 signs of unresolved trauma that we rarely mention or think about. Many of these symptoms are embedded in the body and indicate a stressed nervous system. The energy of trauma never leaves our body until we process it. In some ways, these symptoms are the body attempting to process and resolve the excess energy of trauma.

Many trauma therapists know that this can occur, and they often work on these symptoms with their clients to help them integrate and become more aware of what’s behind the symptoms.

Shaking

Skin and hair picking

and many more…

The fight to keep little-known bacteria out of powdered baby formula

By Laura Reiley and Jacob Bogage: For Complete Post, Click Here…

Parents aren’t adequately warned about the risks of cronobacter, say food safety experts. ‘I fed my daughter like I was supposed to,’ said Megan Surber, whose child is now disabled.

Jeanine Kunkel had been the healthy twin, the one who came home from the hospital that day in 2008 while her brother James stayed a few nights in intensive care. But within days of arriving, she spiked a fever that sent her back to the hospital.

The newborn had developed an infection — caused, her doctors said, by ingesting formula tainted with the bacteria Cronobacter sakazakii. The infection led to a severe case of meningitisthat caused irreparable brain damage. Jeanine’s family sued the formula maker, Abbott Laboratories, arguing the company was responsible for her illness, but a jury found the company not liable. The company’s lawyers dredged up incidents from the family’s past and argued that the bacteria could have come from anywhere, including the family kitchen.

Jeanine’s situation is rare, but not isolated.