Saturday, June 5, 2010

Taped State Senate testimony reveals 36% increase in Medicaid-care related deaths

On March 16, sworn testimony presented at a Hawaii legislative informational hearing stated the death rate among the state's disability community had risen 36% in the year following privatization of the state's Medicaid services to the disabled and elderly. 

Larry Geller of Disappeared News attended the hearing and posted a videotape on his blog two days later.  There was never any response from the state regarding the startling news.

The sworn testimony is being given by Dr. Tina McLaughlin, Chief Executive Officer of CARE Hawaii.  The hearing is being held by State Senators Suzanne Chun Oakland, chair of the senate DHS committee, and David Ige, chair of the senate health committee.  The comments about the increased death rate come at about 5:40 on the video.

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About Me

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I'm the mom of a child with disabilities. Hannah's first neurologist said she might never develop beyond the level of a 2 month old infant, and there wasn't anything I could do about it. The brain damage was just too severe. Nine years later, she walks, uses a touchscreen computer and I've just been shown she can learn to construct sentences and do simple math with the right piece of technology. Along the way, I discovered I needed to teach myself what Hannah's rights to services really were. Learning about early intervention services led to reading about IDEA and then to EPSDT. I've been waiting for the Obama administration to realize the power and potential of EPSDT for the medical rights - including the right to stay at home with their families - of children with disabilities. The health reform people talk about long term care, and the disability people talk about education and employment, but nobody is talking about EPSDT. So I am.