kansas

Kansas Equipment Exchange (KEE) in cooperation with Kansas Medicaid and other agencies accept wheelchairs, hospital beds and other durable medical equipment (DME) that are no longer being used.  KEE refurbishes and makes these items available for other Kansans at NO CHARGE. KEE assists Kansans in obtaining affordable durable medical equipment. RCIL is one of the five KEE access sites and covers 13 counties.  We will be holding an equipment drive this Saturday, June 4th, in Topeka and we are looking for equipment to help fill the needs for people with disabilities in our 13 counties.  If you have equipment you are no longer using please bring it to 517 SW 37th Street in Topeka anytime between 8:00am-2:00pm.

KYEA

Kansas Youth Empowerment Academy (KYEA) will be hosting a garage sale and bake sale during this time too.  So plan on bringing some change to help change the lives of youths with disabilities. KYEA’s mission: The Kansas Youth Empowerment Academy educates, mentors, and supports youth with disabilities in Kansas to be contributing members of their community.

KYEA Garage Sale Flyer 2016

As part of the KanCare Waiver Integration Project, KDHE will be providing a one-hour training about Medicaid waivers. This training is a result of recommendations from the Waiver Integration Stakeholder Engagement (WISE) workgroup. The training is designed to help anyone who works in Medicaid-funded programs or receives Medicaid-funded services to understand:

What “waiver” means in the Medicaid world How two different types of waivers (1115 demonstrations and home and community based services – HCBS – waivers) are the same in some ways and different in others What protections are, and can be, included in each kind of waiver

There will be in-person training sessions, in Topeka, and conference calls January 6-February 4, 2016. One of the in-person sessions will be video-taped and placed online for those who cannot attend in person or participate in a conference call. More sessions may be provided in other locations at a later time.

Everyone must register for this training, using the form linked below. If you have questions about this training, please contact Carol Arace at carace@kdheks.gov or 785-296-4753.

Waiver Medicaid Training Form

Home and Community Based Services
KS Dept for Aging and Disability Services
503 S. Kansas Ave
Topeka, Kansas 66603

Ph: 785-296-4986
Fax: 785-296-0256
Email: hcbs-ks@kdads.ks.gov

KDADS is hosting a “KanCare HCBS Waiver Integration Information and Comment Tour” and are encouraging consumers and their families to attend.  All locations will feature meetings at 1:30pm-3:30pm for providers and 5:30pm-7:30pm for consumers and families.

Topeka Tuesday, Nov. 10th Capitol Plaza Hotel 1717 SW Topeka Blvd

Wichita Thursday, Nov. 12th Doubletree Wichita Airport 2098 Airport Rd

Kansas City Thursday, Nov. 12th Hilton Garden Inn 520 Minnesota Ave

Hays Monday, Nov. 16th Ambassador Hotel 3603 Vine St

Pittsburg Monday, Nov. 16th Holiday Inn Express 4011 Parkview Dr

If you are unable to attend in person there will be conference calls on Friday, November 13th from 12:00pm-1:30pm and Tuesday, November 17th from 5:30pm-7:30pm. To access the conference call dial: (866) 620-7326 Enter code: 527-268-5242.

The Kansas Department on Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) is preparing to submit the paperwork necessary to renew the waivers that guide HCBS in Kansas.  The draft includes changes to the existing services.  Consumers are encouraged to read the information that KDADS is going to submit to the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid and provide feedback. 

The draft renewals, which include the Transition Plan for Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings and proposed changes for each HCBS Program’s renewal are available online at www.KDADS.ks.gov for public comment until December 10, 2014. The Public Comment period allows all consumers and providers of the follow programs: Frail Elderly, Intellectual/Developmental Disability, Physical Disability and Traumatic Brain Injury.  

Additionally, KDADS has provided a summary of the proposed changes. Only the areas of proposed changes identified in the summary document are available for public comment. New documents with helpful information about the transition plan have been posted online as well.

You may access the documents three ways:

Online: www.KDADS.ks.gov – on the home page

In Person: At your local Community Developmental Disability Organization (CDDO), Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) or Center for Independent Living (CIL).

By Email: HCBS-KS@kdads.ks.gov – Please notify us if you need an accommodation

Questions and Answers are made available online and shared through appropriate public sessions, conference calls, listservs and bulletins during the comment period. A summary of responses will available online after the public comment period has ended for the renewals or any changes to them, and the summary of responses will be provided to CMS as part of the renewal submission.

Comments and Public Input on a Transition Plan can be submitted to KDADS during the comment period the following ways:

By Phone: 785-296-4986 or 785-296-3473
By Email: HCBS-KS@kdads.ks.govSubject: HCBS Renewals Public Comments
By Mail: KDADS, Attn: HCBS Programs, 503 S. Kansas Ave, Topeka, KS 66603.
By Fax: 785-296-0256, Attn: HCBS Programs

 

Open enrollment for KanCare is underway. If you joined KanCare in January 2013, your open enrollment for plan year
2014 began this month, with changes going into effect Jan. 1, 2014. Open enrollment packets have been mailed out to
these members. For members who joined KanCare after January 2013, your open enrollment packets will be sent to you
around the anniversary date of you joining KanCare.

Open enrollment gives you the choice to change your plan if you want. If you choose to keep
the same health plan you have now, you do not need to submit an enrollment packet, and you
will be automatically re-enrolled in the same plan.

All members will have 60 days to review their open enrollment packet and decide whether or
not they want to stay in their plan or change to a different plan. For more information about
Open Enrollment, please visit www.kancare.ks.gov.

(This article is from KanCare Advisor which is a bulletin published by Kansas Department of Health and Environment and the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services)

 

 

 

 

 

KanCare wants your thoughts on their program that was started January 1, 2013.  There will be two meetings on the same day in each of the city they visit. Meetings will be in the afternoon and evening. You can come anytime between 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM for the afternoon meeting and anytime between 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM for the evening meeting. You do not have to stay for the full two hours.  If you have questions, please call 1-866-305-5147. If you need accommodations, please call Cindy Stortz at (785) 296-4753.  You can also email KanCare@kdheks.gov.  Si necesita asistencia en Español llame al (866) 305-5147.

Questions KanCare would like to hear your thoughts on:

1. What do you like most about KanCare?

2. What do you like least about KanCare?

3. What was important to you as you chose your KanCare Health Plan?

Meeting days and locations
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Windsor Place Events Center       Southwest Developmental Services, Inc.
102 W 8th Street                             1808 Palace Dr., Suite B
Coffeyville, KS 67337                      Garden City, KS 67846

Wednesday, May 22, 2013
ComCare Mental Health Center    Ft. Hays State University – Robbins Ctr.
635 N. Main                                        One Tiger Place
Wichita, KS 67203                              Hays, KS 67601

Thursday, May 23, 2013
Lawrence Memorial Hospital        Central Kansas Foundation
330 Arkansas, Conf. Room A          1805 S. Ohio St
Lawrence, KS 66044                        Salina, KS 67401

 

 

 

Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services Secretary Shawn Sullivan today reminded KanCare participants that the April 4, 2013, deadline for changing their Managed Care Organization (MCO) health plan is rapidly approaching. KanCare participants who wish to stay with their current MCO do not need to take any action. Those wishing to change to a different MCO health plan before the deadline may call 866 305-5147 for assistance. This opportunity is open for participants who were enrolled in the program as of January 1, 2013.

The next opportunity for these participants to change their MCO health plan will be at the end of this year, when the next open enrollment period begins. Those who become eligible for KanCare later in the year will have a 90-day period in which they can change their MCO health plan, and their next opportunity will be during the annual open enrollment period. Visit http://www.kancare.ks.gov/choosing_a_plan.htm for more information on the three KanCare MCO health plans.

Or, if you need face-to-face assistance, a new entity called the Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC), is a resource that is part of KanCare. This companion to KanCare offers a statewide network of ADRC counselors who provide options counseling, information and guidance to Kansans of all ages and abilities— and income levels, not just KanCare participants—through a single point of entry.

The 11 Area Agencies on Aging in Kansas provide ADRC services in 105 counties across Kansas. These include:
•     Information, Referral and Assistance
•     Options Assistance Counseling
•   Functional Assessments (including CARE assessments)

The ADRCs function as a visible and trusted resource throughout the state, providing simplified access to long-term services and supports as well as publicly administered programs such as Medicaid.

“ADRCs are empowering older adults and the disabled to make informed choices about their services and supports,” said KDADS Secretary Sullivan. “They streamline access and ensure that each individual’s needs are being met. The ADRC can refer individuals to an array of in-home, community-based and nursing home services, as well as provide decision-making support.”

Dave Geist, Executive Director of the Southwest Kansas Area Agency on Aging and prime contractor of the ADRC, added “The ADRC one-stop shops allow older adults, people with disabilities, their caregivers and families, to get information and services they need as their health and long-term care needs change. The ADRCs are only one phone call away.”

Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRC) are a resource for all Kansans. Kansans interested in accessing information or connecting with their local ADRC may contact the statewide call center at 1-855-200-ADRC (2372).

 Learn more about choosing the KanCare health plan that is right for you and your family.  Medicaid participants are encouraged to attend a meeting where they will be provided information to choose your KanCare plan.  If you have questions, please call 1-866-305-5147. If you require special assistance for a meeting (like a translator or hand outs in Braille) please call Rita at 785-296-5107. You can also email us at KanCare@kdheks.gov. You must ask for this assistance by noon on November 20.  Transportation to the meetings is not available. There will be two meetings on the same day in each of the cities visited.  Meetings will be in the afternoon and evening.  The afternoon meetings will start at 1:00 p.m. and end at 3:00 p.m.  The evening meetings will start at 6:00 p.m. and end at 8:00 p.m.  Please see the dates and places below.  (Click table for larger image.)

 

 

 

The House & Senate conference committee for the FY 2013 budget have held four rounds of negotiations thus far. Next round is scheduled for 1:30 this afternoon.

Senate negotiators (Carolyn McGinn, John Vratil & Laura Kelly) have held firm on two items that are crucial to the disability community. Please take a moment and email them our thanks and encouragement for their continued support.

The 2 issues at stake currently are:

  1. Add $1.2M (All Funds) to the Home and Community Based Services/Physically Disabled waiver to fund an additional 60 individuals to meet maintenance of effort requirements for the Affordable Care Act.
  2. Add $350,000 (State General Funds) for grant funding of Centers for Independent Living

House negotiators (Marc Rhoades, Kasha Kelley, & Bill Feuerborn) do not appear willing to fund either of these items. Please take a moment and email each of these folks. You can use the KACIL Legislative Handout for talking points.

We need to make sure they understand:

  • The importance of HCBS in maintaining dignity and independence, as well as it being a fiscally sound service delivery method.
  • The vital role that Centers for Independent Living serve in the Kansas disability community.
  • The toll that budget cuts have taken already on CILs and HCBS. (For example, downsizing staff and programs, waiting lists)

Just like any other twenty-seven year old American woman I just want to live a happy, successful, and meaningful life. From the outside I look like a “normal” woman. When you look at my brown hair, brown eyes, and average height you will see a woman who looks pretty “normal”. What you won’t see is my disability.

I don’t use a wheelchair, I don’t have crutches, no cane, and no tell tale sign that says I have a disability. As a young child I had severe medical problems that gave way to Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy and damage to the Ulnar nerve in my right arm. I also happen to be right arm dominant.

I struggled for much of my life to maintain “normal” activities with my right arms movement and use being somewhat limited. As I got older the limitations increased and the pain became a daily companion. At the age of 24 I finally gave up and applied for SSDI. I was approved in April of 2008.

Difficulties mounted

This was a minor victory because I quickly came to a place where I realized that I was entering a very dark phase of my life. December 2009 I moved back to Kansas after spending three years in Maine. I settled on Ottawa, Kansas and purposed in my heart that I would make this work.

January of 2010 I moved into my apartment with my roommate. By March I began to realize that I was in trouble. My roommate worked more than ever before and that meant that I spent more time alone. My depression and anxiety became so severe that I stopped going out in public. The fear and anxiety related to the social stigmas surrounding disabilities weighed heavy on my heart.

I saw 2 to 4 doctors a week and took 23 medications a day. I honestly spent my days sleeping and mindlessly passing the hours. Life continued on his murky path for months. I realized that I had more trouble doing the basic things around my home that “normal” people just do. I was struggling to function.

Finally I heard about a company in town that had some services for people with disabilities. I called this company and spoke to the receptionist. I scheduled an in-home appointment and within two weeks cancelled it.

I was embarrassed and ashamed. Here I sat at the age of 26 unable to carry out the most basic human tasks. I was struggling with just brushing my hair and would just throw it up into pony tails to hide the tangles.

Taking the First Steps

Two months later I gave in, swallowed what tiny bit of pride that I had left, and called that company back. I expected them to just hang up on me. I mean who would blame them? I wasted their time and cancelled last time.

Instead of being faced with indifference or rudeness I was treated with respect and more kindness than was even deserved. I set the appointment and hung up feeling, if even only slightly, hopeful!

A week later the gentleman from that company came to my house. As we went through the appointment I felt so ashamed and embarrassed that tears came. I found myself having to tell this kind stranger things about my body and my health that I had never told anyone.

After the assessment he told me about the steps involved and the waiting list. I was disheartened. I had opened up about all of this and told all my secrets. I told him all of it and it was for nothing because I would not see services for years.

Finding Hope in Working Healthy

Then he told me that there was the working healthy program. He explained the basics and also told me that he may be able to get me a job where he works. I was delighted. Could this really happen?

After our appointment was completed I called Working Healthy. I was accepted into the program within two weeks. I interviewed at the gentleman’s company and got the job in September 2010. I was just amazed. I kept thinking was there really a CHOICE for me? Could I really get out of this dark place and modulate towards a better future?

I look back at the way my life was and compare it to my life now. I went from being so depressed that I would not go out in public and dealing with so much chronic pain that I could not function to who I am now. I am so proud to say that I am now in a much better place.

One year to the day after being hired I was promoted. I help people with disabilities every day. I help them learn to help themselves and I understand their struggles. I help with wheelchair ramps, mountains of paperwork, assistive technology, medical equipment, finding funding sources, youth advocacy, and I help people learn Independent Living Skills.

Thankful

All I can honestly say is thank you! Thank you to the wonderful people that I am now lucky enough to call my co-workers who took a chance on me. Thank you to Jonathan Sproule for coming that day to assess me and telling me that I could get up and telling me that I could live and not just survive.

Thank you to my mother Rita Marriott who is also my PCA, helps me be the best me that I can be, comes to work every day to help me, and never stops believing in me. Thank you to the Resource Center for Independent Living! RCIL has helped me find my voice, has helped me find my independence, and has helped me realize that I too can fan the flame of acceptance!

Without RCIL and centers just like it all over Kansas I know that I would NOT be where I am today.

This is a guest post written and submitted by Jennifer S. Thank you, Jennifer for sharing your story!