Getting and Keeping Iowa ON-TRAC for Health

October 13, 2021

Last year, Iowa's UCEDD was awarded a community-based transition planning grant from the Administration for Community Living (ACL). This grant allowed the UCEDD to lead a partnership of service providers, representatives of state agencies and organizations, self-advocates, and youth and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to review and analyze health care transition services in Iowa, and to produce an action plan with ready-to-implement solutions. The partnership was called TRAC, for Transition Resources to Adult Care for Health. At the end of the planning year, the UCEDD applied for additional funding to implement the plan, and recently received word from ACL that the UCEDD was awarded three more years of funding to implement ON-TRAC, Our Network of Transition Resources to Adult Care for Health.

"Because people with intellectual and developmental disabilitieshave experienced the challenges and barriers of making the transition to adult health care," says UCEDD program manager Tammie Amsbaugh, "having them as partners on the TRAC planning team was critical to understanding theirneeds for comprehensive quality health care and to developing modelsof care."

The ON-TRAC model aimsto improve health care transitions for people with ID/DD,using self-advocacy and partnership with health care providers to access quality health care. This will promote health equity, as itempowersindividuals, families, and communities.During theproject implementation, the team will:1) train a cohort of Peer and Family Advocates to support and empower people with disabilities and caregivers; 2) share information that promotes access to standards of quality health care and community life for people with ID/DD; 3) train Health Navigators to work in health care settings with Peer and Family Advocates and providers; and 4) facilitate collaboration between Peer and Family Advocates, Health Navigators, and health systems.

To implement ON-TRAC, a blended team of UCEDD staff withexperience and expertise in the areas of disability and health, inclusive employment, self-advocacy, and education, will work with University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital psychiatry staff Pixie Plummer, MD, developmental and behavioral pediatrician, and Marc Hines, Associate Director of Outreach and Advocacy. Project outcomes intend toassure underserved communities have improved access to health services that ultimately enhance social capital, self-determination, community integration and participation, and promotefull and healthy livesin the communityfor all.

Learn more about ON-TRAC for Health from Tammie Amsbaugh at [email protected].