The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that one-quarter of Americans live with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Based on their findings, the need for updated and tailored long-term care plans that reflect their specific issues is of paramount importance. Yet, experts reveal that they lack much-needed planning to secure government services or provide direct care.
An impending intergenerational crisis
The combination of loved ones, government officials, and advocates are sounding the alarm that the absence of a plan combined with a substandard social safety net could reach crisis levels. The outcome could lead to the disabled no longer being able to live independently in their respective communities. Their destinations may become nursing homes or institutions operated by their individual states.
While the Americans With Disabilities Act represented a key “win” for those suffering from disabilities, more options are needed. Close to three-fourths of Americans with disabilities reside with a family caregiver. Of that number, 25 percent are 60 or older, based on data from the Center on Developmental Disabilities at the University of Kansas.
Even more alarming is fifty percent of families planning for their disabled loved ones’ future. Fewer of them have plans that are current. Various factors come into play and include both the complexity of the process and financial limitations and challenges in accessing government services and their specific needs and wishes.
Recent congressional action provided $12.7 billion to enhance Medicare programs throughout the nation. Time is of the essence as the availability of the funding ends on March 2025. The Build Back Better Act failed passage in Congress, denying disabled Americans and their families another $150 billion.
The day-to-day challenges of the disabled are only made worse when people in power fail to provide much-needed financial support to make their lives a little easier.