CP State, StationMD, commit to healthcare equity for people with disabilities

The systemic healthcare inequities experienced every day by Americans with disabilities were recently highlighted in the New York Times and the Washington Post.

The cover page from CP State white paper "Prioritizing Health Equity for People with I/DD in NYS."

In April 2022, CP State published a white paper on prioritizing health equity for people with disabilities that features policy recommendation for NY lawmakers and officials.

As partners in the effort to improve health for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (I/DD), CP State and StationMD take to heart the tragic stories behind these headlines. This prompts us to join our voices in response, to declare that we will continue working to expand initiatives that bridge gaps in healthcare for individuals with I/DD.

CP State and its affiliates serve more than 100,000 people with I/DD across the state of New York. StationMD is a telemedicine practice dedicated specifically to delivering medical and behavioral healthcare to people with I/DD across the country. CP Affiliates have a long tradition of developing specialized clinics and trained clinicians to meet the unique needs of their patients with disabilities; unfortunately, funding for the these specialty clinics has been historically below the needs of our community for these services.   However, we have been able to make some advancements in tackling inequitable access to care for people with I/DD:  CP State has worked in partnership with StationMD through funding from the NYS Department of Health in a project in that offers more than 8,300 people access to I/DD-specialized telemedicine services through StationMD, 24/7, from the patient’s home, through both scheduled appointments and urgent, on-demand consultations.

StationMD’s doctors are all board-certified and rigorously trained to understand the complex health conditions that people with I/DD frequently experience. Leveraging common technology and offering wrap-around services, this partnership flexes the healthcare delivery system to bring specialized doctors to patients with I/DD anytime they need medical attention. This helps avoid chaotic and often traumatic visits to the ER, and lengthy and unnecessary hospital admissions that have detrimental impacts on individuals with I/DD, their caregivers, support professionals, and the entire health system.

Additionally, for the past two years CP State has addressed inequity in health access through its Cabrini Health Foundation funded Community Health Outreach Project. To date, CP State has awarded nearly $1.3 million in grants to bridge gaps in healthcare equity through the purchase of items like walkers, hearing aids, dental services, eye care, and shower chairs for individuals. Larger awards have been granted to agencies to purchase mechanical lifts, Parker tubs, Carendo shower chairs, therapy equipment, and iPads for telehealth services.

New York state has developed some innovative solutions so far, and this partnership is a success story about how there are doctors who are fully dedicated to improving the lives of people with I/DD. Working closely with advocates and government leaders, StationMD and CP State are easing logistical hurdles, improving healthcare access, and mitigating health disparities for people with I/DD.

CP State and and StationMD  publicly commit to giving people with I/DD the time and attention their medical matters deserve, and we will continue to encourage systemic changes that result in meaningful impact on their health.

Mike Alvaro

President & CEO, CP State

Matthew Kaufman, MD, FACEP

CEO & Cofounder, StationMD