October – December

During Fourth Quarter, key topics included:

CMS Transition Plan, Budget, Strategic Planning Leadership Group, Employment, Family Caregivers, Managing Change, Our Future

DODD Director John Martin steps to the podium with students in The Ohio State University TOPS program. Adam Moss (at podium) addressed nearly 600 attendees at the annual Developmental Disabilities Awareness and Advocacy Day, at the Ohio Statehouse. TOPS stands for Transition Options in Postsecondary Settings for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Participants in the Trauma-Informed Care training at Mount Vernon Developmental Center gathered around the large Christmas tree in the Administration Building’s Great Room. Superintendent Dana Mattison noted that it was important for everyone at every level of staffing to be involved in the training.

  • Ohio releases draft plan to comply with new federal HCBS requirements — In January 2014, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released new requirements for Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers administered by states. December 15, as required by the new federal rule, the Office of Health Transformation (OHT) released a draft transition plan for public comment. Based on the comments it receives, OHT will refine and submit a final transition plan to CMS by March 17, 2015. The draft plan is on the OHT website, along with a public notice, a one-page summary and Q&As.
  • Our Future: DODD CMS Transition Plan Public Forums Scheduled — A new schedule for the DODD CMS Transition Plan forums has been set. Join members of the DODD CMS Transition Plan Committee to learn more about the new rule from the federal Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), and what the state is doing to ensure we’re in compliance. Anyone interested in learning more is encouraged to attend. See the updated schedule online in the December 4 Pipeline Extra, and share this flyer with others who may be interested in attending.
  • DODD debuts the Our Future section of website – The new section includes frequently-updated information about changes to Ohio’s developmental disabilities system – including the new CMS rule, the letter from Disability Rights Ohio, and the Strategic Planning Leadership Group. The website is DODD.Ohio.Gov/OurFuture.
  • Legislation: Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) – In December, the U.S. House of Representatives moved forward legislation that would allow people with disabilities to save money without jeopardizing their government benefits. The bill — known as Achieving a Better Life Experience Act, or ABLE — could be slated for a vote in the Senate before January 1.
  • Developmental Centers Embrace Trauma Informed Care — A holistic approach to serving people within Ohio’s developmental disabilities system is being embraced statewide, with an emphasis on person-centered services and positive interventions. Trauma Informed Care focuses on the importance of physical, psychological, and emotional safety for both service participants and providers, and helps survivors of traumatic experiences rebuild a sense of control and empowerment. Training for DODD staff is being conducted around the state, including at each Developmental Center.
  • Managing Change – During Fourth Quarter, many Pipeline articles touched on the subject of managing change either through legislation, rules, conference training sessions, or other means. These included: Behavior Support Rule Training Clarifies New Information – DD professionals attended a training on the proposed revised Rule 5123:2-2-06 (Behavioral Support Strategies that Include Restrictive Measures), sponsored by Ohio Partners in Justice; OACB Conference Spotlights Change — Informative sessions including updates by DODD staff focused on ways to continue to improve services for individuals and families in their communities; and, at the Family Advisory Council Meeting in October, several speakers — including families — discussed changes within the statewide DD community.
  • Ohio at Forefront of Employment Efforts — A statewide employment conference, WORKING Together, was hosted during National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM – October), and united more than 300 people with an interest in expanding employment options for people with disabilities. Speakers from outside Ohio made it clear that our state is several steps ahead of many others. In addition, at the Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities (GCPD) recognition event, several employers were honored for making significant contributions to the disability community in Ohio.
  • Family Caregivers Month (November) — The 2014 theme, ‘Care Comes Home,’ acknowledges that care does not always take place in hospitals, nursing homes, or doctors’ offices, and that a large percentage of caregiving occurs in a family home. DODD salutes the thousands of families that include and rely on these dedicated caregivers.
  • Special Feature: Ohio’s DD Community Gives Thanks – The November 25 issue of Pipeline included many reasons for thankfulness submitted by readers. It also included a message from Director Martin. In it, he stated:

The Family is at the core of all we do – it is a person’s first community.”

  • Strategic Planning Leadership Group (SPLG) Wraps Up Meetings – During Fourth Quarter, the SPLG delved further into the benchmarking process, planning for a stronger and more sustainable developmental disabilities service system in ten years. Subjects discussed included Developmental Centers, private Intermediate Care Facilities (ICFs), and waivers. The final meeting of the SPLG in November included completing draft language for several ten-year and two-year benchmarks. The Report containing the recommendations will publish in December and will help to inform and guide long-range planning.

All issues from Fourth Quarter are in the new Pipeline format at the DODD website, Pipeline page.

They include: October 1, 2014; October 15, 2014; October 29, 2014; November 12, 2014; November 25, 2014; December 10, 2014; December 16, 2014.