Approximately 50% of Regional Center services are dependent on federal Medicaid funding. For adults with autism, this funding helps pay for essential services such as day programs, supported employment, supported housing, therapies, transportation, even adult diapers. These core, basic services for adults with autism are now at risk. California is already struggling with under-funded services for the disabled. Caps and block grants would make matters worse.
The Senate bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 calls for a huge drop in Medicaid spending. This would devastate adults with autism and all those with developmental disabilities. They are collateral damage in this bill that also targets services for the poor and elderly.
The Senate is delay its vote until after the July 4th recess. Five Republican senators are stating they will oppose the senate bill this week which would mean the bill will not pass. However they could change their minds. Public pressure can influence legislators.
TAKE ACTION NOW
Call friends, relatives and colleagues in states below and ask them to advocate to their senators.
Ohio: Rob Portman
Tennessee: Bob Corker
Wisconsin: Ron Johnson
Utah: Mike Lee
Kentucky: Rand Paul
Maine: Susan Collins
Alaska: Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan
Nevada: Dean Heller
West Virginia: Shelley Moore Capito
Arizona: Jeff Flake
Colorado: Cory Gardner
Louisiana: Bill Cassidy
Pennsylvania: Pat Toomey
Montana: Steve Daines
Nebraska: Deb Fischer and Ben Sasse
Missouri: Roy Blunt
Indiana: Todd Young
Georgia: Johnny Isakson
Alabama: Richard Shelby
Florida: Marco Rubio
Autism Society of America issued talking points and suggested letters, and social media suggestions through their toolkit just released. http://www.autism-society.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/ASASaveMedicaidToolkit2017.pdf
• DO NOT cut, change or restructure Medicaid.
• Any change to the structure of Medicaid or cuts would impact individuals with autism.
• Program cuts, along with block grant or per capita cap proposals would hurt individuals with autism who have no
alternative means of paying for essential services.
• These proposals will shift costs to states, beneficiaries and/or their families, and providers of services.
• States will have no choice other than to cut services and eligibility as they have fewer and fewer federal resources to address ongoing health needs for a growing and aging population, individuals with disabilities, and low-income communities.
• Changes to the funding structure of Medicaid could limit the availability of critical and cost-saving preventative care
• Medicaid provides critical health care services to children across the country in a variety of settings, including in schools.
• Do NOT allow states to opt out of requiring health plans to cover essential health care benefits
• DO NOT vote without a CBO score of the final version of the bill the Senate votes on and adequate time for Senators and the public to understand how it will affect the American people.
• Reject any bill that causes large coverage losses, ends the Medicaid expansion, caps and cuts the Medicaid program, or guts critical protections for people with health conditions.
• Call the Senate Finance and HELP Committees and demand they hold hearings BEFORE they bring the bill to the floor for a vote: Call the Senate HELP Committee at 202–224–5375 and the Senate Finance Committee at 202–224–4515
Here's how to contact your Senators:
• Telephone calls: Use the Congressional switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak to your senator—tell them where you live and you will be directed to your senator's office
• By Fax: Use https://faxzero.com/fax_senate.php to find your Senator's fax number.
• Social Media: Use contactingcongress.org to find email addresses, Twitter names, and Facebook pages for your Senator.
(Credit given to DREDF for the above action alert)
Thank you for your activism.