The Global report on health equity for persons with disabilities published today shows that because of the systemic and persistent health inequities, many persons with disabilities face the risk of dying much earlier—even up to 20 years earlier—than persons without disabilities.
Experts say many people with intellectual and developmental disabilities do not have long-term plans for when family members lose the ability to help them access government services or care for them directly.
The Disability Determination Division in Austin was at a breaking point.
Inside its vast two-story warehouse, close to 130,000 claims were awaiting review by the state employees who help decide whether Texans will get disability benefits from the Social Security Administration — a backlog that would take at least a year to clear. Nearly 40 percent of the examiners had quit since January, driven out by crushing workloads and low wages that could not compete in the high-tech boomtown. Those who stayed toiled in long rows of cubicles or at home reviewing massive medical files.
My Life Is in My Caregivers Hands: Disability Advocate Alice Wong’s Vision for a New Approach to Health Care
When I could no longer walk and started using a power chair, needed assistance breathing, and experienced difficulty swallowing and eating, I learned how to direct and manage my caregivers like a boss. I’ve done it ever since I was a child. This year, however, presented the greatest challenge in my abilities because the stakes were higher and dire.
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