Health, Safety, and Quality Assurance

Issue Description: The current description is in need of revision, as a result of new policies and practices that have been instituted by DDD in response to the passage of Stephen Komnino’s Law.  Much of the committee’s efforts focused identification of priorities that should be addressed in the revision of the position statement.   These efforts included the distribution of information to the committee for review and discussion.

The current issue statement is:

Within the current DDD system, there are significant gaps in quality and safety for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) across in-home care and community-based service options.  A common issue that many families face is the fact that information regarding the care and safety of their loved ones with I/DD is not transparent and readily available.

If loved ones are injured or otherwise involved in an “incident” within a developmental center, group home, or day program, information is rarely shared with families due to legal concerns by the provider in question.  The level of detail within incident reports can also vary depending on the provider agency; which begs the question – how can the state enforce policy if there is no standardized method for reporting health and safety-related incidents?

Not only must families have immediate and unrestricted access to incident reports involving their loved ones, but they must also have more direct insight into how the state goes about monitoring system-wide incidents.  Currently, the state self-monitors.  Instead, an independent quality assurance body should be tasked with overseeing complaints and other incidents within the DDD system.  From the data compiled by such a body, actionable steps must be made to address complaints and prevent further instances of abuse or injury.

Issue Action Items:

  1. Review and utilize existing information to inform advocacy efforts as related to health, safety, and quality at the state, local, and organizational level. Suggested materials include:
  1. Expand the description of quality as presented in the current issue statement to focus on multiple concepts of quality as specified in the informational materials listed above. The CQL 5 Factors of Quality address: Human Security, Community, Relationships, Choices, and Goals. Each of these factors includes related indicators.
  2. Increase knowledge of committee and stakeholders of the scope of quality efforts taking place across the DD system. Ideas included requesting updates and presentations from DDD leadership and creating opportunities for stakeholder input focused on this topic.

Next Steps:

  1. This issue topic committee lacks self-advocate representation. The group will be expanded to include a self-advocate with interest in the topic.
  2. Review informational materials focused on the topic of quality to draft a comprehensive issue statement that is grounded in best practice.
  3. Solicit expert presentations as needed to inform committee members and other interested stakeholders.
  4. Establish where there are related efforts taking place in other DDAN Committees and collaborate as needed to ensure a clear, consistent message focused on ensuring high quality, community supports for people with developmental disabilities.

DDAN ISSUE REPORT: HEALTH, SAFETY AND QUALITY ASSURANCE.pdf

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