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Developmental Disabilities Community Asks to be Recognized as Medically Underserved
A coalition of over 30 national health and advocacy organizations dedicated to people with developmental and intellectual disability (fka mental retardation) has asked the federal government to officially recognize people with neurodevelopmental disorders as a medically underserved population (MUP).
Neurodevelopmental disorders are a group of conditions that adversely effect the development of the brain and nervous system and include: autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, fetal alcohol syndrome, fragile X syndrome and hundreds of other conditions that can result in intellectual or developmental disability.
"Individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders have the some of the poorest health outcomes in the nation. The level of health neglect that we see, clinically, is unbelievable," said, Dr. Matthew Holder, the Executive Director of the American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry, a national professional association formed to improve the health outcomes of people with neurodevelopmental disorders and intellectual disabilities, through patient care, teaching, research, and advocacy.
Though the federal government has been designating certain populations as medically underserved since the 1970s, people with neurodevelopmental disorders have never received this designation. The federal government uses the MUP designation to help attract more physicians to a given patient population through special programs like tuition reimbursement, incentivized research programs and special Medicaid rates. According to the coalition, based on the federal designation formula used by the Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA), people with neurodevelopmental disorders should qualify. "We are just asking the Federal government to recognize what many of us, including the Surgeon General of the United States, have been documenting for years," said, Dr. Holder.
For further information about the American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry (AADMD) contact Dr. Matt Holder, MD, MBA, Executive Director of the AADMD at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 602-625-3805.