RSA-227 for FY-2016: Submission #888

Kansas
9/30/2016
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
The Disability Rights Center of Kansas
214 SW 6th Ave, Suite 100
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Topeka
KS
66603
http://drckansas.org
(877) 776-1541
(877) 335-3725
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
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Additional Information
Rocky Nichols
Stephanie West
(785) 273-9661
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Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
B. Training Activities
136
5224
a) Topics Covered - DRC Staff present a variety of topics at our outreach presentations. These include many topics about rights of persons with disabilities <P><p>
C. Agency Outreach
Describe the agencys outreach efforts to previously un-served or underserved individuals including minority communities. <p><p>DRC engages in on-going outreach efforts to underserved populations to ensure effective access of our services. Whenever DRC considers whether it will conduct an outreach or training, one of aspects we consider how the training reach out will to previously unserved or underserved communities. <p><p>
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
9
31
5
7
136
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2,593,090 -- This is the total above reference media hits (each of the above methods multiplied by the circulation, viewership, etc.). <p><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
1. Radio/TV Coverage <p><p>DRC Staff was quote on 8 TV or Radio Reports <p><p>2. Newspapers/Magazines/Journals <p><p>DRC was interviewed or quoted in the following radio and newspapers (for a total of 31 times throughout the year); Topeka Capital Journal (8); KCUR (9); KHI (4); Wichita Eagle (4); KC Star (3); Hays Post (2); Hays Daily News (1); Sacramento Bee (1); WIBW (1) <p><p>3. PSAs/Videos <p><p>DRC has 5 video flyers about persons with disabilities rights on their website. <p><p>4. Publications/Booklets/brochures <p><p>Agency brochures and newsletters on several disability topics and fact sheets on specific issue. <p><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
19
48
67
3
21
B. Problem areas
5
23
30
2
0
10
0
1
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
32
0
4
14
0
0
50
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
14
15
0
5
0
9
0
0
7
0
0
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<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
3
3
0
1
4
17
1
13
0
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Client not responsive. <p><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
1
4
25
31
6
67
B. Gender
33
34
67
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
4
1
0
11
0
48
2
1
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
1
0
0
1
0
0
0
0
6
0
0
0
3
1
1
0
0
0
1
3
29
0
0
0
5
3
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
12
67
E. Types of Individuals Served
37
28
2
1
0
1
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
1
DRC engaged in a critically important group advocacy project that did not end up requiring litigation or lobbying. DRCs efforts led to a successful outcome, positively impacting 422,549. This is an important CAP issue because people with disabilities who are denied access to Medicaid creates a huge barrier to obtaining employment. <P><p>In 2016, the State of Kansas created what is believed to be the largest backlog of Medicaid beneficiaries in the history of Kansas. This backlog caused dramatic problems for beneficiaries trying to apply for Medicaid. At one point the Medicaid backlog ballooned to nearly 50,000 Kansans waiting for Medicaid benefits. People were often waiting 8 or more months just to obtain a determination of their application for Medicaid. This included both those who were found eligible last year and were simply renewing their Medicaid eligibility and new applicants for Medicaid. While Kansans were waiting in this backlog, their Medicaid bills were not being covered, doctors and providers were not getting paid, and people were suffering because they could not access life-sustaining and life-saving Medicaid services. <P><p>DRC tackled this as a systemic, group advocacy project. After significant research, we believed that it was illegal and not allowable for the State of Kansas to maintain any backlog where people were waiting longer than the short period of time spelled out in federal law (45 or 90 days, depending on the type of application). DRC worked closely with stakeholders to find real-life examples of people harmed by this massive backlog. DRC conducted an investigation into this matter. The results were clear. The State of Kansas was violating federal law by not promptly processing Medicaid applications. People were being harmed. Because this was a systemic group advocacy project, we concurrently worked this case up as both a group advocacy case and as a potential litigation case. <P><p>From a group advocacy perspective, DRC advocated with the media, stakeholders, decision makers and key thought leaders on Medicaid issues. We forcefully advocated and promoted the results of our investigation, namely that the huge Medicaid backlog was both unallowable under federal law and that we were treating this as a systemic and group advocacy effort. We were clear with all the players that if the harm being caused by the backlog was not corrected that DRC would take any and all steps within our power, including further public and media advocacy and legal remedies. We advocated that this strong posture was needed to protect the rights of Kansans with disabilities. Non-attorney staff interacted and outreached closely with providers, advocacy organizations, and others to find people who were harmed by this massive Medicaid backlog. We conducted extensive outreaches through email, phone and even canvassing the state and conducting on-site outreaches. We continued to gather examples and information about the harm of t
B. Litigation
0
0
0
N/A <P><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Disability Rights Center of Kansas
No
N/A
B. Staff Employed
<u>Type of positionFTE% yr filledPerson-years</u><P><p>Executive Director 1 100% 1 <P><p>Deputy Director - Administrative Division 1 100% 1 <P><p>Deputy Director - Legal Division 1 100% 1 <P><p>Director of Policy & Outreach 1 100% 1 <P><p>Case Attorneys 3.42 85.5% 3.42 <P><p>Case Advocates 3.71 92.75% 3.71 <P><p>Office Assistant 1 100% 1 <P><p>Administrative Assistant 1 100% 1 <P><p>Communications & Outreach Director 1 100% 1 <P><p><u>Explanation of Duties for all Positions</u>: <P><p>Executive Director - Overall leader and director of the agency. Administrative head of the agency. Employs staff (hires/fires). Ensures accountability, effectiveness and efficiency of agencys programs and services. <P><p>Deputy Director - Administrative Division - Responsible for accounting, bookkeeping, accounts receivable & payable, building and lease issues, human resources, etc. Supervises the Office Assistant and Communications & Outreach Director. <P><p>Deputy Director - Legal Division - Responsible for legal work product of the agency. Supervises the staff attorneys and advocates. Carries an active caseload. Prosecutes cases. <P><p>Director of Policy & Outreach - Responsible for performance of work directly relating to the management policies or general business operations of DRC or its customers. <P><p>Case Attorneys - Provide legal representation. <P><p>Case Advocates - Provide advocacy representation and case advocacy. <P><p>Office Assistant - Answers phones, does office and administrative tasks, etc. <P><p>Administrative Assistant - Provides administrative support to the legal division and assists with general administrative tasks for the entire agency. <P><p>Communications & Outreach Director - manages the tasks associated with outreach, communications/public relations, marketing/publications, and certain administrative office functions of the agency. <P><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
Anderson County - CG has orthopedic impairments requiring her to use a power wheelchair and uses a modified van for transportation. She is currently receiving services through Vocational Rehabilitation. CGs IPE includes maintenance on her van. However, she was having issues getting it repaired, and CG says that her VR counselor was of little help. A DRC advocate was able to work with CG and her counselor to obtain the necessary repairs. DRC educated CG and worked with the counselor to explain why the repairs were needed to help obtain employment, and to explain why it should be covered by VR, and if fact supported the goals and intent of the federal VR program. <P><p>Crawford County - EF has Ushers Syndrome Type 2. She is almost completely blind and has limited hearing with two cochlear implants. EFs VR eligibility was initially denied but with the help of a DRC advocate; her appeal was successful, and she was deemed eligible for VR services. EFs goal was to return to work part time and needed training from the Helen Keller Center. According to EF, VR didnt respond for three months and stalled for several more months. The DRC advocate finally had to involve the Director of Rehabilitation Services by phone and email to resolve the communication issues and administrative obstruction. With the help of the DRC advocate and cooperation of the VR program, the training services were approved, and EF is on her way to successful employment. <P><p>
Certification
Approved
Rocky Nichols
Executive Director
2016-12-21
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