Last week the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the formation of a new Administration on Community Living (ACL) housed within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
“All Americans – including people with disabilities and seniors – should be able to live at home with the supports they need, participating in communities that value their contributions – rather than in nursing homes or other institutions,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius in a statement released last week. Ensuring that these necessary supports are present requires a strong commuity living policy on the Federal level. It also requires using such policy to develop a multi-agency, multi-services approach that guarantees access to and the availabilty of health care, as well as appropriate housing, employment, education, meaningful relationships and social participation. The new ACL aims to fulfill these requirements.
The ACL includes the Administration on Aging, the Administration on Developmental Disabilities and the Office on Disability, all of which will work together to establish a formal infrastructure to ensure consistency and coordination in community living policy across the Federal government. This is the next step following establishment of President Obama’s Community Living Initiative “to ensure the fullest inclusion of all people in the life of our nation.”
For more information, read HHS Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius’ recent statement on ACL.
Also visit the ACL website.