Iowa MCO program not working

After being a part of Iowa’s Managed Medicaid program for several years now, we will tell you it’s not meeting the needs of Iowa’s most vulnerable populations it’s intended to serve. My adult son, Alex, lives with Asperger’s Syndrome in a rural community and struggles to get coverage for the necessary services required to meet his daily needs.

Since its inception, Iowa’s MCO program has not risen to meet the extensive array of obstacles Iowans with disabilities face on a daily basis, especially for those living in rural Iowa. It was sad for us to learn that Alex is urged, against his wishes, to move away from his small town and to a larger city where there are more options for public transportation. Alex should not have to conform and involuntarily move away from where he chose to live and work and away from his family for his disability related needs to be met.

Simple things like getting to the store to get groceries create challenges for many Iowans who rely on the program. Having access to services for basic needs like transportation, food and safe and affordable housing would go a long way in improving the health and wellbeing of individuals like Alex. Because MCOs limit access to transportation or that they don’t make it available in rural areas, individuals with disabilities struggle to reach all available services.

Alex is an adult male living in a rural community without public transportation, and due to his disability, he does not drive. With his MCO only covering transportation to and from his medical appointments, he struggles to find transportation daily to meet his other basic needs. Whether that is to the store, to work, or even other appointments, Alex is stuck in a situation where transportation is simply not offered or covered with what his current MCO, and he is unable to do many of the things that he wishes to do.

If transportation were to be covered by CareSource, Alex would be able to access transportation services to get him to the store, to work, and anywhere else he may need to go without the limitations and many of the worries that he faces now.


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