Issues we face

Progress for Our Community Members

The ingression of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990 was meant to guarantee equal opportunities for all people with disabilities in all aspects of life. Our society has moved along far in the recent past, and we have made significant progress towards fully integrating individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities into general society. One of the main triumphs in recent years has been moving from a system where members of the community were segregated into institutions, to one where individuals are supported to live in the community. Although there are still currently 151 state-operated institutions in 37 states, the hope is that there will be zero left by 2028.
In California, it is expected that by the end of 2021 the last three state-operated developmental centers will close. In response, community organizations have developed resources specific to the needs of these community members, including transition supports, housing resources, training for service providers and support staff, transportation assistance, supported living options and crisis services. With the right supports and resources, we hope that individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities will have the opportunity to experience a high quality of life.

 A Continuing Barrier

Quality Healthcare

Despite the great strides made since the ADA passed and the recent move towards integration, access to quality healthcare still remains an elusive concept for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Although the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) offers some protections, there are larger problems with the healthcare system as a whole.

Some of the major barriers to provide care for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities:

  • Shortage of physicians with skills and adequate training to care for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, resulting in care focused on a particular disability rather than whole person care
  • Lack of trained and culturally sensitive support staff in healthcare facilities
  • Scarcity of medical practices willing and/or prepared to take the time to properly care for patients with intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Lack of facilities that are accessible and have the proper equipment to care for patients with disabilities
  • Low reimbursement rates for physicians and specialists resulting in patients traveling further to seek care, as well as long wait periods to see general physicians and specialists
  • Complex and confusing insurance and health care systems, coupled with poor care coordination


Call to Action

 

Sadly, the barriers to care experienced by our community members have led to a lack of access to quality health care, poor access to screening services for the prevention of disease, poorer health, higher incidence of chronic health conditions and mental illnesses.

By listening closely to our community members’ clamoring voices, The Achievable Foundation clearly realized the urgency to tackle these barriers and disparities in health, and transform the healthcare system for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Out of this dire need, we seized the opportunity to develop an innovative approach to care, and The Achievable Health Center was born.

 This is the first Federally Qualified Health Center in California, and possibly in the nation, with services specifically tailored to serving individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities and their families. When we built the Achievable Health Center, we incorporated all of the features that would make this the best medical home for our patients and to lead the way to a higher standard of care for our vulnerable community members.

Our medical providers are knowledgeable about the needs of people with intellectual/developmental disabilities, take the time to listen, and treat each individual patient with the utmost respect. We are housed in a state-of-the-art custom-built accessible facility and provide patients access to a variety of support systems. Please visit our health center page to read more about this groundbreaking program.


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