Advocate

This was a crisis long before COVID-19.

Who is a dSP?

A direct support professional (DSP) provides mental health and disability support and services. Because of their efforts, many Iowans are living, learning and working in their communities - not stuck in institutions.

 

Some of the services they provide include cooking, cleaning, budgeting, shopping, banking, job development/coaching, transportation and community activities. DSPs support over 160,000 Iowans. Their jobs are essential.

What is the crisis?

DSPs provide essential services, but Iowa's current (fixed) reimbursement rates make it nearly impossible for community providers to recruit and retain quality employees.

Providers report an annual 36% DSP turnover rate and currently, 99% of providers have DSP vacancies.

What are we asking?

10% rate increase with 75% pass-through to DSP wages. Requesting this rate increase is Area Residential Care's #1 public policy priority. 2021 is a critical year, as effects of the global pandemic have impacted all facets of life and business, creating an even greater need for reliable, continued, support for Iowa's most vulnerable citizens.

What sets Iowa’s community providers apart from other healthcare workers?

  • Iowa Association of Community Providers (IACP) members receive more than 90% of their revenue from Medicaid, whereas most health care organizations receive 25-30% of their total revenue from Medicaid.

  • DSPs provide services 24 hours/day,

  • 7 days/week, 365 days/year

  • The need for services is lifelong, not sporadic or short term

  • Private insurance does not cover these services

take action

We are asking you to support a 10% rate increase with 75% pass-through for the following wages:

  • Habilitation

  • Home and Community-Based Services/Intellectual Disabilities (HCBS/ID)

  • Home and Community-Based Services/Brain Injury (HCBS/BI) Intermediate Care

  • Facility/Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/ID)

  • This action would help Area Residential Care improve the lives of Iowa’s most vulnerable citizens.

Contact your member of Congress (MOC) and urge them to support DSPs. Your member of Congress is more likely to read your email if you write a short note about why this policy is important to you and/or why you support (and want them to support) DSPs.

Please be sure to thank your members of Congress who are supporting DSP priorities and help us deliver essential care.

What to say:

Dear (INSERT NAME),

I am asking for you to support Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) by prioritizing a 10% budget increase to HCBS, ICF and Habilitation providers. We need this funding to go directly to providers and 75% should be used for direct care wages.

DSPs provide essential services, but Iowa's current (fixed) reimbursement rates make it nearly impossible for community providers to recruit and retain quality employees. Providers report an annual
36% DSP turnover rate and currently, 99% of providers have DSP vacancies.

2021 is a critical year, as effects of the global pandemic have impacted all facets of life and business, creating an even greater need for reliable, continued, support for Iowa's most vulnerable citizens.

Thank you for your support,

(INSERT NAME)

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Dubuque, IA 52002

info@arearesidentialcare.org

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