Services need to be provided

Published 4:52 pm Friday, October 17, 2008

I am the adult brother of Cornelius Evans, who was featured in the article “Struggling for Services.”

When Decatur Seminole Service Center had to pay back Medicaid for the services that they provided my brother, it was not because of anything Cornelius or my mom did or did not do. It was the lack of accountability and poor record keeping on the part of the Center.

It was only days after they were notified of the pay back that my mom was told that they were discontinuing services for Cornelius, saying that they didn’t have the staff to provide his services.

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At the same time, they continued providing at least 12 other people the exact service they had been providing Cornelius. One of those people had the severity of disability similar to Cornelius.

Where did they find the staff to provide those services?

Then the acting director, Carolyn Martin, stated that the Center was not supposed to provide services to children. However, that is not what the press release of March 17, 2007, issued by DHR State of Georgia says.

According to that release, services for children like Cornelius would be increased in the community through the waiver to keep them out of institutions. Such children are not provided day services through local centers until age 21, that is the responsibility of local schools. However, community services in the home are provided by Centers.

Children with mental retardation are provided services at other centers throughout the state. Also, there is not a problem of funding being available for Cornelius, it has been approved through July 2009.

The problem is, as I see it, the local Center retaliated against my brother because they had to pay back money related to the services they were providing him. Cornelius is still waiting for services the Center agreed, through his individual service plan, to provide. The funding is already approved.

Morris Evans Jr.