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The Connecticut Statewide Transition Plan for Alignment with the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Final Regulation’s Settings Rule

Comments to the Connecticut Department of Social Services Home and Community Based Services Unit by David V. Hunter

 

September 21, 2016

I am the President & CEO of Mary Wade, which is a nonprofit senior living campus located in New Haven.  Mary Wade provides a continuum of programs and services including adult day health center, transportation, primary care, out-patient rehab, and 45 accommodations in its residential care home.   Mary Wade also provides 94 accommodations in its Skilled Nursing Center that includes both short term rehab and long term care for those with significant chronic illness.   Mary Wade also is a recipient of the Department of Social Services Nursing Home Diversification Grant for the development of a homemaker and companion program and community navigator services.  

 

As a provider with 150 years of serving the community, Mary Wade is very supportive of Connecticut’s Statewide Transition Plan: http://www.ct.gov/dss/lib/dss/pgr/transitionplannotice.pdf and your efforts to ensure compliance with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Home and Community Based settings final rule.

 

Specifically, I wholeheartedly support the state’s effort to bring the residential care home setting into compliance.  Tenants who reside in our residential care home and who receive services and supports through the Connecticut Home Care Program for the Elderly are offered the opportunity to remain in the place they call home.   These services and supports allow them to continue to integrate with the greater community and in many cases, avoid nursing home placement.

 

Mary Wade would very much like to ensure that its residential care home setting can comply with the CMS final rule and we support the state’s efforts to establish the regulatory environment and opportunity to do so.

 

I can provide many examples how these tenants are living a residential lifestyle and why they truly consider this to be their home. 

 

One of our residents, participates in numerous New Haven community activities as a result of her membership in an association, called Chatham Square Neighborhood Association.  She regularly attends monthly meetings and social events, such as dining out with neighbors at local restaurants.  She is involved in a neighborhood program that teaches school age children how to grow vegetables, and then how to cook with the produce.  During the school session, she meets weekly in the neighbor’s home and helps students with their homework.  She has even been known to canvas and make telephone calls in neighbor’s home during the election season.  One of the main reasons for her to live at Mary Wade is due to a significant heart condition. 

 

Several residents go out nearly every day and use the public transportation to visit friends and families, while other residents make frequent trips to shop at Walmart, and attend Centers of Worship on the weekend and Holidays.

 

All residents live in a private room, and locks are installed upon request.  Meals are provided throughout the day, and, some residents request refrigerators to keep food in their rooms.  

 

Parking is available when residents wish to bring an automobile. 

 

Social and life-long learning events are planned throughout the Mary Wade community, and residents participate based on their wishes. 

 

The majority of these residents range in age from 70 to 90 years of age, and they are utilizing supportive services in the residential care home setting in order to maintain the most active and healthy lifestyle.

 

I appreciate the opportunity to comment in support of the statewide transition plan and the ability for a residential care home to meet the requirements of a community based setting in compliance with the final rule.  I am available for further discussions and meetings should the need arise to elaborate on this important and vital topic to the seniors in our community.

 

 

David V. Hunter

President & CEO

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