Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities Health Disparities Initiative: Geo-mapping and Networking to Improve Health Services for Individuals with IDD (NY UCEDD/LEND)

October 1, 2015

The Health Disparities Initiative at Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities focuses on providing training for healthcare professionals, providing and improving health services to individuals with IDD, and conducting research that provides insights about health system delivery and the needs of individuals with IDD. The Initiative is currently developing two exciting new projects that will provide more information about service providers, gaps and barriers to servicing individuals with IDD in Western NY.

A survey of Medicaid Service Coordinators was completed in early 2015 and resulted in almost 7,000 records. Currently data analysis and geo-mapping of health care providers and dentists serving people with IDD in Western NY is being completed in order to understand how many people with IDD do not have a health care provider or a dentist, and how far people must travel to access care. This analysis is also aiding in identifying the most frequently named providers and dentists, which will allow for future outreach and training opportunities.

The Health Disparities Initiative is also working to establish a network of nursing and medical staff at area agencies serving people with IDD. This network will allow nursing and medical directors, and direct service staff to communicate with each other, facilitate sharing best practices and identifying areas for collaboration. The conference is planned for spring of 2016.

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