Interest in alternatives to nursing facility care is growing according to North Dakota Health and Human Services (HHS). During the first half of 2022, the agency’s Aging and Disability Resource Link was contacted by 6,839 individuals seeking information about in-home and community-based support services. This almost equals the population of Watford City.
During that same period, agency programs and services enabled 2,893 North Dakotans with physical disabilities to live at home with support services, and 62 others were able to move from nursing homes back to integrated community housing with necessary support.
HHS would like to serve more people at home in their communities. However, a lack of accessible, affordable housing and in-home support service providers is preventing more North Dakotans with physical disabilities from enjoying community living.
HHS is inviting adults with physical disabilities, service providers, advocates and others to a discussion and listening session on Thursday, Dec. 8, 1-3 p.m. CT, to raise awareness about these challenges, focus on solutions and share recent accomplishments in the state’s efforts to expand access to in-home and community-based services.
Individuals can attend the stakeholder meeting in-person or virtually. The in-person meeting will take place at HHS Prairie Hills Plaza offices at 1237 W. Divide Ave., Suite 6, in Bismarck. Attendees should enter through door No. 2.
Stakeholders can join the meeting virtually from computers, mobile devices or by telephone at 701-328-0950, Conference ID 443 450 472#. For details on joining online, see the Dec. 8 meeting notice at www.hhs.nd.gov/news/publicnotice.
During the public meeting, HHS Aging Services Section Director Nancy Maier will provide highlights from the state’s most recent six-month report to federal partners on its U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) Settlement Agreement implementation. She will also review plan benchmarks for year three of the agreement and will brief participants on HHS efforts to support and expand the caregiver workforce through a new qualified service provider support hub, a rate study and incentive grants.
In addition, Medicaid level of care annual redetermination requirements will be discussed, along with the person-centered planning HHS team members use when working with individuals who want to move from a nursing home back to community-living or who want to remain living in the community but need support services. Planning is important to identify needs and available housing and support services options.
A North Dakota Housing Finance agency representative will discuss the state housing needs assessment. The agenda also includes time for stakeholders to ask questions, share concerns and make recommendations about long-term support services and programs.
Individuals who need disability accommodations to participate in the stakeholder meeting can contact Michele Curtis at 701-328-8679, 711 (TTY) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To find help with housecleaning, meal preparation, nonmedical transportation, personal care needs and other in-home and community-based services and support, North Dakotans can contact North Dakota’s Aging and Disability Resource Link toll-free at 855-462-5465, 711 (TTY) or by email at email@example.com. Individuals can also apply online for services at https://carechoice.nd.assistguide.net/.
In December 2020, North Dakota entered into an eight-year settlement agreement with USDOJ that is designed to ensure the state meets the requirements of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act by providing services, programs and activities for individuals with physical disabilities in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs. Learn more at www.hhs.nd.gov/us-department-justice-settlement-agreement.