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Blog with us!

The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities invites your blog submissions.

General Submission Guidelines

  • We are looking for submissions about healthcare inequities faced by people with disabilities and proposed solutions to make healthcare more equitable. We want posts that will educate, inform, empower, and challenge people to think in new ways.
  • We are open for submissions year-round.
  • Guest blog posts are usually between 500 and 1,000 words. Please include a short bio and a photograph with your submission.
  • The Center for Dignity team may work with you to edit your blog. Our publication schedule varies. Please allow at least one week between submission and proposed publication date.
  • Authors and photographers have rights. Please credit others’ work in your submission and cite our blog if you republish.
  • Following publication, we will share your blog post via Facebook, Twitter, and our newsletter.

Accessibility

We are committed to accessibility. Please use alt-text and captions for images. Do your best to write in plain-language. We will only post videos that are captioned.

How to Submit

Send your 500-to 100-word posts with a suggested title wo [email protected]. Include a brief bio, picture with image description, and social media accounts that you’d like to share.

Disability Led Coalition Awarded ACL Grant to Identify and Reduce Life-Limiting Inequities in Healthcare, Community Living, and Justice for People with Disabilities

For Immediate Release:                                      
October 18, 2022.

Contact: Leah Smith, Associate Director
Center for Disability, Equity, and Intersectionality      

                                                               

Disability Led Coalition Awarded ACL Grant to Identify and Reduce Life-Limiting Inequities in Healthcare, Community Living, and Justice for People with Disabilities


The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities has recently been awarded a 5-year $2.5 million grant from the Administration on Community Living (ACL). This new funding will allow the Center to lead the nation’s charge to identify and reduce life-limiting inequities in healthcare, community living, and justice for people with disabilities. 

As a result of this new funding, the Center for Dignity will become the National Center for Disability, Equity, and Intersectionality to further expand on its national efforts for greater equity for people with disabilities through disability-led initiatives targeting ableism and racism with an intersectional lens. This project will be led by a team of national partners from Morehouse School of Medicine, the National Cultural Competency Center at Georgetown University, the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities at Kennedy Krieger Institute, and the Autistic Self Advocacy Network. 

As an urgently needed driver of change to reduce systemic oppression and create a more equitable world, the new Center will: 

  1. Increase access to resources that teach and promote anti-ableism, anti-racism, and intersectionality with cultural humility;
  2. Increase the number of culturally informed healthcare providers;
  3. Recommend policy changes to dismantle ableism; and 
  4. Increase leadership by youth with disabilities, serving as Equity Ambassadors to chart a future founded on the tenants of disability justice. 

“We are grateful to continue and expand this important work towards equity. Our team is comprised of leading experts on the topics of disability, cultural competence, antiracism, and youth leadership. They bring skills and a commitment to create transformative change. We’re ready to get started,” says Dr. Kara Ayers, Principal Investigator and Director of the Center for Disability, Equity, and Intersectionality.

Join the Center for Disability Equity and Intersectionality social media community @ThinkEquitable for more information and to stay up-to-date with their work. 

For more details, contact Leah Smith at 806.239.5582 or [email protected]

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Language Access Services to Eliminate Health Disparities and Achieve Health Equity for those with Limited English Proficiency (LEP)

image of a woman with brown, curly, shoulder length hair. She is wearing a turquoise shirt and smiling at the camera.

Christina Eguizabal Love, Psy.D.
Director of Health and Language Access
Office for Health, Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity (O-HEID)
Pediatric Neuropsychologist
Kennedy Krieger Institute

In the United States, about 1 out of 5 people speak a language other than English at home,1 which equates to nearly 65 million individuals. Those with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) do not speak English as their primary language and have limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English.2 Providing language access means ensuring that individuals with LEP can communicate effectively to participate in and receive healthcare, an important component of culturally competent services.3 In fact, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and corresponding regulations, including the Affordable Care Act (ACA), indicate that federal agencies and those receiving federal financial assistance are required to provide meaningful access to services for LEP individuals via trained interpreters, translation services, and more.

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Organization Aims to Address the Double Burden of Racism and Ableism within the Health Care System

For Immediate Release:                                      
August 29, 2022

Contact:
Leah Smith, Project Coordinator

Organization Aims to Address the Double Burden of Racism and Ableism Within the Health Care System

Thanks to generous support from WITH Foundation, The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities will expand upon its existing work by addressing racism and ableism within the U.S. healthcare system. 

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In Response to the Reversal of Roe v. Wade and Its Impact on People With Disabilities

The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities is deeply concerned about the overturning of Roe v Wade and what it means for the control people with disabilities have over their reproductive health. As an organization that is dedicated to addressing healthcare inequities faced by people with disabilities, we know that a more reproductively just system would reduce healthcare inequities among this population. 

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The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities Comments to Communications Equality Advocates Petition for Reconsideration

The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities (CDHPD) submits the following comments to Communications Equality Advocates Petition for Reconsideration.  CDHPD aims to reduce healthcare inequities faced by people with disabilities and is composed of partners from multiple University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), medical and advocacy organizations. One of our four focus areas includes reducing healthcare inequities in mental health and suicide prevention. Thus, we are committed to ensuring that any system aimed at addressing suicide is accessible for all. 

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Supporting Equitable Access to Mental Health Services for People with Developmental Disabilities

If you think you broke your arm, would you be surprised to find that the x-ray would only be covered by your insurance if the bone was actually broken? If you needed surgery, would it feel unfair if insurance refused to pay because the surgeon used one brand of equipment instead of another? Would you be frustrated if your broken arm was eligible for physical therapy if you broke it in a car accident, but not if it was the result of a congenital condition? 

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Clinical Trials and the Exclusion of People with Disabilities

By Stephanie Meredith

A recent federal proposal regarding research for a new class of treatment for Alzheimer’s disease has drawn sharp rebuke from an unlikely critic: a coalition of Down syndrome and intellectual disability advocacy organizations. The reason?  The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) proposal, which is open for public comment until February 9, specifically excludes people with Down syndrome and other intellectual disabilities from participating in the clinical trials. This decision would subsequently prevent them from accessing the treatment (https://www.ndss.org/cms-comment/).

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Multi Colored Trim on a square box. Black text on white background reads: To Promote More Informed Healthcare and Greater Equity Towards People with Disabilities: 1. Insurance Coverage of independent genetic counseling. 2. FDA Regulation of Advertising claims made by testing labs. 3. better educational infrastructure for patients to understand testing and disabilities. 4. Insurance coverage of testing contingent on the provision of better patient education and access to independent pre-test and post-test counseling

In Response to the NY Times: Prenatal Screening and the Social Bias Against Disability

By Stephanie Meredith

A recent New York Times article, “When They Warn of Rare Disorders, These Prenatal Tests Are Usually Wrong” by Sarah Kliff, indicates that when cell-free DNA prenatal screening results show that a baby has high chances for some rare genetic conditions, the baby actually does not have the condition 70-90% of the time (a false positive) (2022). Many parents at the other end of the screening results describe the experience as stressful and scary because they weren’t given sufficient information about the accuracy of the tests and the possibility of false positives. Kliff shares that one reason why expectant parents misunderstand the screening tests is because testing labs describe their screening tests as “reliable,” “highly accurate,” etc. in their advertising materials. Moreover, the author asserts that the companies are highly motivated to expand testing so that they can increase profits in a highly lucrative market. Yet, this widening pool of expectant parents who are undergoing testing can leave some parents in the lurch when they don’t receive the counseling and information they need to properly understand the screening tests. Kliff effectively highlights these important issues and presents a strong case for FDA regulation of advertising claims made by testing labs and insurance coverage of independent genetic counseling.

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Loss and COVID-19: The Toll on Children

Authored by: Tracy Waller, Esq., MPH[1]


As a result of the COVID-19 public health crisis, children are being forced to shoulder an incomprehensible burden of loss. Many children have experienced health issues due to COVID-19 infections or long COVID-19 symptoms. They have also encountered a loss of innocence and protection, as they shoulder the weight of a parent coping with long COVID-19—or worse, the death of a parent or primary caregiver from COVID-19. This loss disproportionately affects young children and children with developmental disabilities because of the increased reliance on their caregivers. 

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