The APSI Advisor
Issue 4
March 2015
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Hello All,

The DD system in Ohio is going through tremendous change and the people APSI serves are experiencing those changes first hand. New initiatives like Employment First, the updated Behavior Support Rule, continued focus on person centered planning, and a new rule for Home and Community Based Services from CMS are moving the system towards more individualized services and supports. These changes are exciting and promote the least restrictive setting and services for everyone.

We at APSI believe we are uniquely qualified to support individuals during these ever-changing times. APSI's goal has always been to help the people we serve receive supports in the least restrictive setting and in the most person-centered way possible.

APSI serves many individuals who experience challenges medically or behaviorally. Each individual we serve deserves the opportunity to experience supports in their local community whenever possible, and our goal is to advocate for those supports. We anticipate more change in the coming years and we strive to work collaboratively with all involved to support individuals with DD to live and work in their communities.

APSI recently completed its FY 2014 Annual Report which highlights the success stories of those we serve, and of our agency as a whole. As you review the information contained in this newsletter and the annual report, you will see that APSI continues to make a difference by serving critical needs; one person at a time.

Sincerely, 
Karla 
 
STAFF SPOTLIGHT: Pat Uhlenhake
Pat Uhlenhake,  APSI Program Director
Pat Uhlenhake brings over 30 years of experience in working with individuals with developmental disabilities to her role as one of APSI's two Program Directors. She has served individuals across all settings, including residential, vocational, and her passion; advocacy. Pat began her career with APSI, Inc. in 1985 as a protective services representative and moved into the role of regional program director for northwest Ohio.  

After 20 years in direct advocacy, she came to the agency's central office to focus on systems and policy issues. Pat has presented on the topics of guardianship and developmental disability issues to state and national audiences.  Pat has a Bachelor's of Science degree in social work from Bowling Green State University.

Pat has been a member of both the Ohio Guardianship Association and National Guardianship Association for a number of years. We are excited to report that Pat was recently elected to serve as the President of the Ohio Guardianship Association. The election took place at the December meeting of the group and her term will run from January 2015 through December 2015. Congratulations, Pat!


Developmental Center Closures Announced
Recently, DODD announced its intention to close two of Ohio's ten developmental centers by June 30, 2017. Below you will find the details of this announcement as they appeared in the DODD publication 
Pipeline EXTRA! dated February 10, 2015:

Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) Director John Martin today informed individuals, families, and staff of the Department's intent to close Montgomery Developmental Center and Youngstown Developmental Center by June 30, 2017.

The state's other eight Developmental Centers (DCs) will remain open, and will continue to serve Ohioans with developmental disabilities who have the most complex needs. Director Martin stated, 

"The decision to close two DCs was not made easily, and much thought was given to selecting which centers to close. Because the number of people living in state-operated DCs has declined by more than 40 percent during the last eight years -- and will continue to decrease by about 90 people each year -- it no longer makes sense to continue operating ten centers." 

Director Martin's announcement noted that the Montgomery and Youngstown centers offered the most transitional opportunities and options for the individuals who live there, and for the staff who work there. He stated, "It's important to note that this is not a reflection on the staff who work in Montgomery and Youngstown. The staff at each of the centers are dedicated to the people they serve, and provide quality services to each individual. Our decisions are based on the needs of individuals to live in the least restrictive settings appropriate to their needs, and on the sustainability of a quality service system." 

DODD leadership is committed to helping everyone involved during this transition, and we understand that changes such as these are difficult for the residents, their families, and staff. Residents of the Montgomery and Youngstown centers will have the option to move to another DC, move to a small Intermediate Care Facility, or move into another community-based residential setting. A personalized transition plan will be developed for each resident to make each move as smooth as possible. Staff also will receive assistance in finding employment at another DC, or in the public or private sector. 



2016-2017 Budget Released
 
Governor Kasich's new budget plan was released in mid February and DD stakeholders around the state were excited to see the unprecedented amount of new funding that has been committed to supporting the lives of those with DD as they strive to become more integrated in the community. 

The addition of 2000 new IO Waivers and the inclusion of nursing as an IO waiver service are just two of the life changing initiatives being made possible by funding from the new budget. 

APSI is slated to receive an increase in General Revenue Funding as a result of this budget.

More detailed information about the budget can be found by reading a recent edition of DODD Pipeline EXTRA!
  

Exciting News

We are pleased to share that APSI has been approved for participation in the Amazon rewards program, called AmazonSmile.

 

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as Amazon.com. The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.


Every item available for purchase on www.amazon.com is also available on AmazonSmile (smile.amazon.com) at the same price. You will see eligible products marked "Eligible for AmazonSmile donation" on their product detail pages.

 

 

Click here to support APSI and begin shopping through AmazonSmile today!
 

 

UPCOMING EVENTS
3/18/15 New Hire Orientation Training at Central Office

3/25/15 Safety Training with Dan Elliot at Central Office (for new hires)  
APSI Anniversaries
January 

21 Years
Jan Bannon (EC)

17 Years
Charly Steinbrenner (NE)

4 Years
Mike Walters (CO)

2 Years
Inez Hunter (NE)

1 Year 
Latasha Crawford (NE)

February

30 Years
Barb Emch (NE)

23 Years
Barb Schuster (NE)

13 Years
Kim Webster (SW)

11 Years
Angie Gerding (CO)
Jeff Lacey (SW)

7 Years
Joey Nunez (NE)

5 Years
Emily Boros (NW)

2 Years
Sandee Hull Ferguson (NW)

1 Year
Crystal Gearhart (EC)
Sue Lopez (NE)
Elaine Owens (NE)

March

27 Years
Wanda Carroll (SC)

10 Years
Beckie Dean (CO)

7 Years
Jamie Vandenbark (CO)

5 Years
Emma Keen (EC)

4 Years
Kelly Martin (SC)

2 Years
Tamika Jenkins (NE)
Anita Maiden (NE)

1 Year
Katina Collier
Paul Lynn
Testimonial from Family
Long time APSI Rep, Deb Kinzer, from the East Central region was recently recognized in a testimonial written by the sister of an individual who was formerly represented by APSI. 

It is a wonderful example of just one of the many ways APSI serves critical needs, one person at a time!

This is a note of appreciation and thanks for the wonderful services you and APSI provide. It's been three years since my sister, Sandra, passed. You helped me and my brother make the hard decisions that neither of us had ever considered.

It was great that Sandra had someone to oversee her care. I thank you, too for the support you gave to me as I looked to find placement close to Cleveland...

-Sandra's Sister

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Welcome
We would like to extend a warm welcome to APSI's newest employees
November 
Mike Rodden (SC)
MaryAnn Holtschulte (CO)

December
John Brickner (NW)
Kevin Solon (CO)

January
Kim Starling (EC)

February 
Catherine Burke (SC)
Jessica Novak (NE)
Julie Grassley (NE)
Beth Totten (EC)

Please Remember!

APSI remains an active participant in the Kroger Community rewards program. In February 2015 we received notification that our third quarter donation earnings total $195.98.

 

We would like to thank the 20 households who contributed to this total by shopping at Kroger between 11/01/14 and 1/31/15.

 

Click here to join the Kroger Community Rewards program and help support APSI's mission! 

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