CPR advocates for adequate healthcare to ensure people with disabilities have access to services so they can participate in healthy and full lives in their communities.
Access to healthcare is critical for people with disabilities.
People with disabilities rely on the healthcare system for medical services – including specialized services like nursing care, physical and occupational therapy, and durable medical equipment.
They also rely on the healthcare system for the supports and services to help them live, work and participate in the community. They need home and community-based services (HCBS) that include residential services, employment supports, respite, personal care services, habilitative and rehabilitative services, and mental health services.
More than 10 million people with disabilities rely on Medicaid to access these important healthcare services. Nearly half a million more people with disabilities are on waitlists for HCBS services.
They need Medicaid to access these services – services that generally are not available through private insurance.
Millions of low-income children with disabilities depend on Medicaid for services and treatment of medical and mental health illnesses. They too need Medicaid.
CPR fights against legislative and federal agency proposals that cut Medicaid funding, narrow Medicaid eligibility or remove protections for Medicaid participants. Learn more about proposed legislation and federal policies that could threaten Medicaid.
Protecting the Affordable Care Act
The Affordable Care Act (ACA), which expanded health insurance, provides important benefits and protections to people with disabilities. Important provisions include:
- Non-discrimination against pre-existing conditions (including disabilities);
- Ban on lifetime or annual caps; and
- Allowing states the option to expand Medicaid coverage to additional populations (including people with disabilities were not eligible for the traditional Medicaid program).
CPR opposes any repeal of the Affordable Care Act that is not replaced with coverage that is at least as affordable and comprehensive as the original legislation. Read here for more information about the importance of the ACA for people with disabilities, and here to learn more about ongoing attacks on the ACA.
Health Care Reform
CPR is a leader in the national conversation about healthcare reform, to ensure that the services that people with disabilities need – long-term services and supports (LTSS), particularly Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) – are included in healthcare proposals being considered. Read the Principles for Inclusion of Long Term Service and Supports (LTSS) in Universal Health Care that CPR helped develop with the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities here.
Medicaid Home and Community-Based Settings Rule
CPR is a critical resource for advocates throughout the country, as well as state agencies, regarding implementation of the Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings Rules. In January 2014, the federal government issued rules that for the first time define what is required for a setting to be considered community-based. These rules will ensure that people who are getting HCBS have access to the benefits of community living, including being integrated in and having access to the broader community, making choices about their daily lives, and working in real jobs at fair pay. CPR is leading a coalition of national disability organizations working to ensure implementation of the HCBS settings rules achieve systems change so that people with disabilities can live, work, receive services, and fully engage in community life. Learn more about the HCBS settings rules, the HCBS Advocacy Coalition, and states’ progress on transition plans. Additional information can be found on the government’s website.