April is Autism Awareness Month, and with the recent and rapid increase in the rate of autism diagnosis (as many as 1 in 50 children are affected by the disorder), we want to highlight some resources available for families, professionals, and community members.
Looking back over the past year, Family Voices Colorado has a lot to be proud of – read on for some highlights of our achievements and impact in 2013, and a preview of what 2014 may bring.
Tom Rose, Executive Director, shares updates on existing and new programs: During the past year I have often been asked how Family Voices is weathering this time of transition, and what we are doing to prepare for the upcoming changes to the health care system. In case you, too, are curious, this is what we have been up to…
Since 2011, with the support of The Colorado Health Foundation, Family Voices Colorado has been working on a pilot project to develop consistent tools and processes that support youth and young adults with special health care needs in the transition from pediatric to adult care. Our first tool is a Guide to Transition, now available.
Family Voices National is partnering with Genetic Alliance and Parent to Parent USA (P2P) to collect resources that will support individuals who wish to act as advocates on behalf of themselves, their families, or others. We are developing an online toolkit and would like to include a personal story that demonstrates the importance of advocacy in each of several topic areas.
Training & Resources: Webinars to increase family leadership, Parent Support Provider certification, and the Bright Futures Family Network.
Advocacy groups share feedback from consumers about what features are important in the new Colorado Health Benefit Exchange; the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative is looking for real people’s stories of health insurance challenges; and upcoming events for families and professionals.
Early Intervention services can help children overcome early delays and improve long-term health outcomes. Yet the National Survey of Children’s Health found that in the past year, 4 in 5 young children did not receive age-appropriate screening for developmental, behavioral, and social risks and delays, leading to missed opportunities for early intervention and advancing school readiness.
The Medicaid Buy-In Program for Children with Disabilities (Children’s Buy-In) allows eligible working- and middle-class families to pay a low monthly premium to ‘buy in’ to Medicaid benefits. Family Voices Colorado helps families of children with special health care needs understand their options and apply for the Buy-In, so that more children have access to affordable, quality health care.
Colette thought her professional background had prepared her to work with the system on behalf of her daughter, but she found she needed help along the way, and Family Voices was there to walk with her. Colette shares why she is thankful for Family Voices Colorado this month.