LSA-DN Weekly Update

Disability Network News
Monday, February 10, 2020


New Medicaid Waivers Threaten Healthcare Coverage For Millions

On January 30 CMS Administrator Seema Verma of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a plan that would allow states to use the Medicaid waiver process to fundamentally alter Medicaid as we know it. The CMS proposal would make sweeping, detrimental changes in eligibility, health benefits, drug coverage, and premium costs for people who now receive Medicaid healthcare coverage as part of the program’s expansion which occurred under the Affordable Care Act.

More from Lutheran Services in America


Medicaid Change Prompts Worries About Disability Services

Disability advocates are decrying a Trump administration plan to alter Medicaid that they say could ultimately compromise services that people with disabilities rely on.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a proposal late last week giving states the option to accept fixed payments from the federal government to cover some Medicaid expenses. In exchange, states would gain more control over the parameters of their programs.

More from Disability Scoop


Some with disabilities can live on their own with a little help. But Virginia is falling behind on its promises to do more.

Virginia is behind on its promises to help more people with intellectual or developmental disabilities live on their own instead of in large institutions or group homes, a new review shows.

But for the lucky few who get the help they need to live in their own apartments, that independence is priceless.

More from The Virginian-Pilot

Residents sue Pennsylvania over closing of state centers for developmentally disabled

Family members and 13 residents of Polk Center and White Haven Center filed a federal lawsuit to block the Wolf administration from closing the two facilities for adults with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities, alleging that the plan violates the residents’ right under the Americans with Disabilities Act and other federal laws.

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services announced the closures, expected to take three years, in August. The centers, in Luzerne and Venango Counties, are among four remaining state centers. They have about 700 residents, down from more than 2,000 a decade ago, reflecting the nation’s long-term trend toward community-based care.

More from the Inquirer

Research & Reports

The Child Care Crisis Disproportionately Affects Children With Disabilities

With a full-time job and a school-aged child as well as newborn twins, Alexis knew she was going to need child care. After several days in the neonatal intensive care unit—like many twins, her babies were born prematurely and needed extra care—the hospital discharged them with no specialized support or instructions. As her babies grew, however, Alexis noticed that one showed some muscle weakness on one side; rolling to the left was difficult, as was holding a bottle with both hands. As she prepared to return to work, she wondered: Could interventions like physical therapy help her baby? And how would that affect the kind of care the infant would need?

More from Center for American Progress

Resources, Opinions & Opportunities

I Performed at the Super Bowl. You Might Have Missed Me.

As a child of immigrants, a grandchild of refugees, a Deaf woman of color, an artist and a mother, I was proud to perform the national anthem and “America the Beautiful” in American Sign Language at the opening of the Super Bowl on Sunday. I accepted the invitation to represent the National Association of the Deaf in partnership with the National Football League because I wanted to express my patriotism and honor the country that I am proud to be from — a country that, at its core, believes in equal rights for all citizens, including those with disabilities. So while Yolanda Adams and Demi Lovato sang on the 50-yard line at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, I signed along on the 40.

More from the New York Times

Upcoming Events

LSA-DN 2020 Spring Meeting
April 22-24, 2020
Washington, D.C.

LSA-DN 2020 Summer Meeting
August 5-7, 2020
Cincinnati, Ohio


For more information on our topic specific work groups, please email Dania Douglas at

  • Policy & Advocacy Team
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Bill Kallestad

Lisa Morgan

Dania Douglas 
Director of Public Policy
LSA Disability Network
Lutheran Services in America