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Provider Newsletter - July 6, 2020


Evaluating the Use of Technology for
People with Disabilities

The COVID-19 pandemic has many industries reconsidering how services will be provided across the country while social distancing is necessary. The increased use of technology will be a critical component in re-opening plans in most markets including healthcare. Telehealth services have increased tremendously as federal and state regulations loosen requirements to ensure people can receive the care they need. Disability and other community-based providers are evaluating and implementing technology for programming use as well. The Council on Quality and Leadership (CQL) recently evaluated the use of technology to provide services for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (I/DD).  The full article, which can be found here, highlights several types of common technology used to support people with disabilities.  

While many agree that the use of technology is helpful to promote independence, safety and community inclusion, a person-centered approach is critical in its implementation to preserve the individual’s dignity and rights. The CQL article, “Remote Supports For People With Disabilities,” written by Michael Clausen, CQL Quality Enhancement Specialist, also points out the ethical implications of implementing these types of supports, including the stigma behind the need for technology, individuals’ feelings of being watched or monitored, and also the unequal use of technology in surveying people based on race or background.  

Recognizing the need for balance, CQL references an ethical checklist that can be used to determine if the technology in question is in the best interest of the person. Providers looking to implement more technology-based supports for individuals may consider a similar tool as a check and balance to ensure the benefits outweigh the risks and remain person-centered.  

Another article from Open Minds, “Technology As A Game Changer for I/DD Support Services,” found here,  provides a look at the expanded technology offerings in long-term services and supports and howI/DD community is using. The article describes tips for enabling the use of technology within the service delivery system and includes other helpful resources related to its implementation. 

Is Your Organization Utilizing Technology or Other Innovative Solutions to Support People?
We Want to Showcase Your Efforts!

Care Design NY has been  featuring organizations in a “Spotlight” on their ability to provide unique and innovative services and/or supports to the I/DD population during the COVID-19 pandemic. If your organization is utilizing services such as telemedicine, food delivery or other virtual supports and you want to showcase these efforts to Care Design NY care managers in your region, CLICK HERE to fill out the questionnaire.


Unite New York – Coordinated Care Network 

In the June 22nd Provider Newsletter, Care Design NY highlighted Unite NYC, a coordinated care network serving the downstate area. Care Design NY also partners with Unite New York, the equivalent to Unite NYC for upstate NY. Unite NYC and Unite New York use the same shared technology platform, Unite Us, to send and receive electronic referrals between network partners.  
Unite New York is a coordinated care network of health and social care providers. Organizations in the network are connected through a shared technology platform,Unite Us, which enables them to send and receive electronic referrals, address people’s social needs, and improve health across communities. Unite New York is sponsored by a variety of funding partners currently led byAdirondack Health Institute,  Alliance for Better Health,  AIRnyc, Catholic Family Center,  Central New York Care Collaborative, and  Public Health Solutions

According to Michaela Ferrari, Senior Engagement Manager for Unite Us, “As a Unite New York network partner, organizations can screen for and identify a client's social needs and send a secure electronic referral to the most appropriate network partner(s) for that specific service.”  

By using Unite New York for referral needs, network partners can track outcomes to show when someone receives the care they need. Network partners include community-based organizations (CBOs), safety net health care providers, health systems, insurers, and other groups looking to better support people to achieve healthy outcomes. Network partners can choose to participate in whatever way works best for them and can change how they participate in the network over time. To learn more about Unite New York and request to join, visit us here

If your organization wants to connect with others or send or receive referrals for client services, consider joining Unite New York.  

COVID-19 Updates and Provider Resources

Life Plan and Staff Action Plan Addendums – OPWDD Lunch & Learn 
On July 15th from 12pm-1pm, OPWDD will hold a Lunch and Learn Training session on how to complete the COVID-19 LP/SAP Addendum for providers and care managers.  The registration information and materials will be available through SLMS and OPWDD will be sending out an E-Visory with registration information with more information. 

COVID-19 Resource – Wearing a Mask Social Story 
 The Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT) developed a visual guide for individuals about wearing a mask to avoid spreading germs.  CLICK HERE for the resource, which  includes visuals on why it is important to wear a mask, as well as information about how to safely wear and remove masks. It is also available in six different languages.    

OPWDD issues requirement for CFR-2A submission 
On Monday, the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) issued a requirement for all agencies to submit the CFR-2A, supplemented by an additional COVID-19 related question. The CFR-2A schedule is to be completed based on information contained in your agency's interim May 31, 2020 financial statements, and must be submitted by July 20, 2020  to  

Emotional Support for Front Line Staff and All New Yorkers 
New York State has resources available for front line staff to support their emotional well-being. Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services. Any New Yorker can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314  for mental health counseling. 

NOTE: Information related to COVID -19 is rapidly changing. This newsletter is up to date as of today, 7/6/2020. For additional information, please visit the provider resource page.


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Care Design NY wants to ensure contact information is up to date for all agency partners. If your agency has experienced changes in departmental or executive oversight, please let us know by filling out the agency demographic form.  


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