Sending Office: Honorable Seth Moulton
COSPONSOR H.R. 6611 – THE HEADS UP ACT OF 2018
American Health Care Association (AHCA), American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR), American Podiatric Medical Association, Autism Self Advocacy Network, Autism Society of America,
Autism Speaks, Franciscan Children’s, FRAXA Research Foundation, Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council, Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress, Massachusetts General Hospital, National Association of State Head Injury Administrators (NASHIA), National
Down Syndrome Congress, National Down Syndrome Society, Partners Healthcare, SourceAmerica, Special Care Dentistry Association, Special Olympics International, The Arc of Massachusetts, The Arc of the United States, The MENTOR Network, The National Association
of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD), Woods Services
Thursday, July 26, 2018 marks the 28th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, groundbreaking legislation that extended civil rights law to prohibit discrimination against people with disabilities. We have made significant
progress since this bill was signed in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush, but still have a long way to go when it comes to fully integrating people with disabilities into our communities. One such example of where we are failing is in the field of healthcare;
people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) experience poorer health outcomes, shortened life expectancies, and lack access to even the most basic forms of care when compared to the non-disabled population.
That is why we have introduced our bill, H.R. 6611 – the Healthcare Extension and Accessibility for Developmentally disabled and Underserved Population Act, or the HEADs UP Act, of 2018. This bill would designate people with I/DD as a Medically
Underserved Population (MUP), opening access to much needed primary care and specialist services, incentivizing new research, and authorizing more favorable reimbursement rates for providers who treat this population.
The “Medically Underserved” designation was created with the passage of the Health Centers Consolidation Act of 1996. This bill identified migratory and seasonal agricultural workers, the homeless, and residents of public housing, as well as residents
within a geographic area who lack access to primary care health services as a MUP. Despite years of advocacy and ample evidence that people with I/DD qualify as a MUP, they still have not received this important designation.
People with I/DD meet every criteria to be classified as a MUP: they lack access to primary care services because providers have not been trained to treat them; they experience poverty and infant mortality at higher rates than the non-disabled
population; and the I/DD population over 65 is growing rapidly. The only reason that the I/DD population has not been designated as a MUP is because they do not live together in a geographic area. Thanks to decades of advocacy, people with I/DD are living
in the community and more fully integrated than they have ever been. To go back to forced segregation, in order to receive the benefits of being designated a MUP, would be to require the community to undo all of the hard work that has been done.
That is why Congress must designate people with intellectual and developmental disabilities as a medically underserved population. This designation will lead to improved health outcomes, increased longevity, and enhanced quality of life for people
with intellectual and developmental disabilities — and will help us to fully realize the promise of the Americans with Disabilities Act, a bill we still celebrate 28 years later. To sign on to this bill, please contact Chrissy Raymond in Congressman Seth
Moulton’s office at Christine.Raymond@mail.house.gov or 202-225-8020.
Seth Moulton Gregg Harper
MEMBER OF CONGRESS MEMBER OF CONGRESS
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