I read reports, so you don't have to…
Here are some interesting tidbits of information from a Third quarter Review of Key Performance Indicators for Community Supports and Treatment Services (CSTS) for fiscal year 2011 to 2012. CSTS is the service arm (as opposed to the administrative arm) of our local Community Mental Health Agency. It primarily serves people with Developmental Disabilities and Mental Illness under a managed care system that mandates that all eligible people who qualify for Medicaid must receive services suitable to their condition.
The report admits to some major problems that I attribute to the poor economy, the atmosphere of hostility toward public employee unions, and an aging workforce that sees early retirement as the best option available: "… there has been an abnormally high retirement rate at the beginning of the calendar (middle of the fiscal year), resulting in significant turnover through all levels in the organization. This turnover can attract new and enthusiastic staff members and it can also result in a relationship disruption for the consumer. Finally, CSTS has had a difficult time competing for exceptional staff due to economic conditions. "
Then there is this:
According to this graph, less than 30% of the developmentally disabled adults (DD.a) who live in the county receive services through CSTS. Some of them might receive services through other agencies, although it is doubtful that many do. Where are the missing 70% of people who, by definition, have significant disabilities, but do not receive services?
Last but not least, there's this:
The report claims that the "organization does an exceptional job serving individuals in a community setting and minimizing the use of a restrictive setting. Those adults who are in restrictive settings require that level of care, a structured milieu and constant supervision and monitoring. "
This means that 16% of adults with developmental disabilities (DDa) who are served by CSTS live in group homes. 84% of those served are in "nonrestrictive settings" and you can bet that most of those live at home with their families. For my sons who need a lot of care and 24/7 monitoring, caregivers who are themselves monitored and given support and backup, a group home is not restrictive. We don't know if the agency is doing an exceptional job until we talk to the families who might want a decent group home for their adult family members to live in, but do not trust the system to provide good care or don't know it is available.