September 17, 2018

Project Summary:

This project allowed Va‐LEND and UVA to establish a partnership that encouraged a trainee exchange that will continue beyond the time and scope of the FAST grant funding. It allowed for trainees from both programs to take advantage of the strengths of each program: UVA - interdisciplinary clinics and Va‐LEND ‐ disability policy opportunities. The collaboration between these 2 entities were taken one step further with the exploration of clinical training resources and opportunities in rural, Southwest Virginia.

Goals and Objectives Accomplished:

Goal 1. Increased the number of clinical observation and training opportunities available to Va‐LEND
trainees within the UVA Medical Center in Charlottesville.

Objective 1: Provided a minimum of 12 clinical observation opportunities to Va‐LEND long
trainees at UVA Medical Center interdisciplinary clinics that serve children and youth with developmental disabilities.

Goal 2: Increased the number and type of opportunities for UVA Developmental Pediatric and Autism
Fellows/trainees to become aware of current disability policy issues at the state and national level.

Objective 2.1 Va‐LEND provided opportunities for at least 2 UVA Fellows/Autism trainees to participate in state and national disability learning events via live internet streaming and webinars.

Objective 2.2 Va‐LEND included at least 2 UVA Fellows/trainees in its LEND delegation at
the Disability Policy Seminar to be held in April 2019.

Goal 3: Established an on‐going relationship between Va‐LEND and the UVA Developmental Pediatric
program that included trainee exchange and other collaborative training opportunities that become
available during the timeframe of the project and continue into the future.

Objective 3.1 UVA and Va‐LEND developed a plan for exploring clinical resources and needs in rural Southwest Virginia

  • 9 Va-LEND Trainees have observed 15 UVA clinics. Two Va-LEND Faculty visited one clinic (Autism). Va-LEND Trainees visited the Down Syndrome Clinic (4 visits), DBP Diagnostic Clinic (2 visits), International Refugee DBP Clinic (1 visit), Pediatric Neuromuscular Clinic (2 visits), Autism Clinic (2 visits), NICU Clinic (2 visits), Cerebral Palsy Clinic (1 visit), and Congenital Heart Defects Clinic (1 visit).
  • VA-LEND invited 2 UVA Fellows to participate by Zoom in the Seminar I classes related to policy in preparation for participation in the 2019 Disability Policy Summit. Unfortunately, the UVA fellows were not able to attend the Zoom sessions live due to schedule conflicts. The sessions were recorded for future viewing.
  • The fellows viewed the Zoom recordings of the Seminar I sessions and completed the session feedback forms. They felt that watching the Seminar sessions was helpful before attending the Policy Seminar, and that they could see the connections between what they learned from watching the Seminar sessions and their participation in the hill visits. One UVA participant "learned the history of disability policy in the US, I learned about the different forms of Waivers including the CCC plus and the DD waiver and the waitlist policy in Virginia and how VA differs from other states from a funding standpoint, I learned that you can talk to your representatives probably better when they are not in session because they have more time to listen and that is it important to give both facts and relate rationally as well as with an emotional connection or story".
  • Two fellows participated in the Policy Seminar in April. As evidenced in a post Policy Seminar conference survey that was sent to all Policy Seminar participants the two fellows from UVA reported their participation was beneficial. They felt that it helped them learn new information and skills, and that it provided a way to collaborate with and learn from people of different disciplines. They shared they learned the "ways to effectively advocate legislators by using facts and appealing to them with stories." They also learned "different ways that people see disability and inclusion of all people in disability." Lastly one fellow shared that participation in the Policy Seminar "will improve my care and understanding of the needs of patients with disabilities - whether it be from the insurance side or guardianship or fighting for their basic rights."
  • The Co-Training Directors from Va-LEND, and two individuals from UVA took a trip to SWVA on April 25. UVA set up the initial meetings. The following sites were visited: Autism Clinic at Virginia Tech, Mount Rogers Community Services Board, Southwest Virginia Care Connection for Children (one of the statewide network of centers of excellence for children and youth with special healthcare needs), and the Healthy Appalachia Institute at the College at Wise. The visit was successful in that both Universities were able to explore the resources available in that part of the state. VCU provided additional information to the sites about the different programs that the Partnership offers for families who have children with disabilities in that part of the state. Additionally, Va-LEND was able to recruit a trainee from SWVA for the 2019-2020 cohort who will participate via distance learning. At a debriefing meeting VCU and UVA discussed the SWVA visit and next steps. UVA noted limited future capacity for VCU students to continue to observe their clinics in the future, and the two teams identified barriers to address. VCU hopes to be able to work with UVA and other connections to ensure that resources are available to people in SWVA.
Products Developed

Primary Contact:

Jacqueline Robinson-Brock | [email protected]