Connecticut Human Services Committee Public Hearing Testimony Craig Sears. HB 5893: AN ACT CONCERNING HOME AND COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES FOR PERSONS WITH ACQUIRED BRAIN INJURY

The Human Services Committee will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, March 1st at 11:00 A.M. in Room 2B of the Legislative Office Building (LOB). One of the bills up for discussion is HB 5893: AN ACT CONCERNING HOME AND COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES FOR PERSONS WITH ACQUIRED BRAIN INJURY.

This bill would require equal access to ABI Waiver slots for those who have been on the waitlist and those transitioning off the Money Follows the Person demonstration program. As many of you know, currently individuals are forced to be institutionalized in order to access home and community based services in a timely manner.

Date
March 1 2011
Human Services Committee Public Hearing Testimony

My name is Craig Sears; I am a person with a brain injury speaking up. I am here today to speak in support of HB 5893: An Act Concerning Home and Community Based Services for Persons with Acquired Brain Injury. I was in a motor vehicle accident in 1987, leaving me with a traumatic brain injury (TBI). After suffering a brain injury, as most survivors do, I have been faced with many new and overwhelming challenges in everyday living. As a survivor of a brain injury, my journey made me all-too familiar with the difficulties of individuals and families working through the arbitrary system of care. In the 1990s I became a spokesman for the Brain Injury Association of Connecticut, advocating for Connecticut's Acquired Brain Injury Medicaid Waiver, implemented in 1999. This waiver allows the state to permit organizations to provide non-medical services to people with TBI enabling them to live in the community outside of nursing homes and institutions. People should not be forced to enter nursing homes or other institutions in order to gain access to the Waiver. This legislation would help assure that ALL those with brain injuries who need the ABI Medicaid Waiver program have equal access.

In an effort to advocate for myself and all those individuals who are protected by the established legislation which is found within the Acquired Brain Injury (ABI Medicaid Waiver) Program I am asking for your support of HB 5893.

Craig Sears Survivor of a Traumatic Brain Injury
Member of the Connecticut TBI Advisory Board