The Health and Disability Working Group (HDWG) was started in 1992 with initial funding from grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trusts to promote innovative patient-centered managed care delivery systems for people with disabilities across the country. The original demonstration consisted of partnerships between state Medicaid programs, health care providers who were knowledgeable about disability, health plans and consumers/advocates.
One of the more lasting contributions of this early work was the development and implementation of reimbursement systems that helped remove some of the disincentives to enroll people known to have high medical care costs in capitated health plans. Other contributions included the development of provider contracting standards, quality measures, and promotion of a consumer voice in program planning, implementation and evaluation.
Since the completion of this initial demonstration, the Health and Disability Working Group has engaged in a wide variety of research, training and policy projects on health services for people with disabilities of all ages. Our interests span the spectrum of disability and chronic illness, and include medical, behavioral health, support, and long-term care services. Our primary focus is on low income and disenfranchised populations. We have a special interest in service delivery systems that address the needs of individuals with multiple chronic conditions, and minority populations.