HealthMatters Program Team Consulting on Walmart Foundation Grant to AUCD “Nutrition is for Everyone”

Walmart Foundation Grant to AUCD Expands Nutrition Efforts for People with Disabilities in Four States

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) is pleased to announce that the Walmart Foundation has granted AUCD and four of its member Centers $300,000 to launch the “Nutrition is for Everyone” project. This one-year pilot project will provide nutrition education for an estimated 20,000 people in the disability community across Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.

Based on public health data, the four selected states were identified as areas where people with disabilities are least likely to be consuming fruits and vegetables and therefore in the most need for nutrition education and support. The “Nutrition is for Everyone” program design employs “ Nutrition Ambassadors,” trained experts from the AUCD network and local community who will help people with disabilities, as well as their families and friends, develop the knowledge and skills to necessary to make healthy decisions about their nutrition needs.

“We are thrilled that AUCD was selected for this collaborative funding that benefits the field,” said Andy Imparato, AUCD’s Executive Director. “This is the first time the Walmart Foundation will support direct training people with disabilities and community members on nutrition, and we are confident the project will have a positive impact on the health of people with disabilities in Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.”

The network Centers collaborating on this effort will receive over $190,000 in combined funding to facilitate the program, in which they will competitively select a state “Nutrition Ambassador.” Ambassadors will develop a tailored work plan based on their state’s specific needs. Ambassadors will provide training for community members with disabilities and their friends and families, to increase the number of people with disabilities receiving nutrition education and subsequently increase the rates of consumption of fruits and vegetables for people with disabilities.

Nutrition and disability experts from the Institute on Disability and Human Development, AUCD’s member Center at the University of Illinois in Chicago, will serve as consultant advisors, sharing lessons learned from “HealthMatters Program,” a program that builds capacity for organizations across the country to implement health promotion programs for people with developmental disabilities.
The four Centers working with Nutrition Ambassadors and AUCD on this project are:

Partners for Inclusive Communities at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, AR

Since 1994, Partners for Inclusive Communities (Partners) has trained students to support people with disabilities and their families. Partners has graduated 74 nutrition students with 20 of those receiving more than 300 hours of training. Graduates have gone on to become credentialed as Registered Dietitians and Nutritionists.

Human Development Center at Louisiana State University, New Orleans, LA

Many projects at the Human Development Center focus on supporting the education and health of people with disabilities, as well as children and families from diverse and under-served populations. Current nutrition education and health literacy projects include the Early Head Start- Child Care Partnership, a federally funded collaboration with the Louisiana State University Agricultural Center to promote better nutrition and food safety in a cost-efficient, culturally sensitive manner.

Center for Learning and Leadership at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK

The Center for Learning and Leadership is located in the College of Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. The community relationships developed by this Center demonstrate a strong commitment to supporting self-advocates as they build capacity in their communities and enact systems change. The Center will draw on the research and guidance of academic associates at the College of Allied Health, as well as current research at the Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity Lab.

Boling Center for Developmental Disabilities (BCDD), University of Tennessee Health Science Center

The Boling Center for Developmental Disabilities (BCDD) will leverage its Act Early Ambassador experience with systems change in developmental monitoring to benefit “Nutrition is for Everyone.” BCDD is an interdisciplinary program that supports children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families through training, service, applied research, information dissemination, planning, and policy development. BCDD offers inclusive nutrition consultations across the lifespan for people with disabilities.

AUCD is a national, nonprofit network of centers in every state and territory working to advance policy and practice for people living with disabilities and their families. Learn more about AUCD and its Public Health is for Everyone program, which offers resources for public health professionals to create programs that benefit entire communities, including people with disabilities, by visiting or on Twitter at @AUCDnews.

The mission of the Walmart Foundation is to create opportunities so people can live better. They provide grants to the thousands of organizations that share their mission. In 2014, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation gave $1.4 billion in cash and in-kind contributions around the world. Global in-kind donations accounted for $1 billion. Learn more at, or on Twitter at @WalmartGiving.

Health Care for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities across the Lifespan

Rubin, I.L., Merrick, J., Greydanus, D.E., Patel, D.R. (Eds.) (2016), Health Care for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities across the Lifespan
Switzerland: Springer.
A new book has been published that offers a unique lifespan approach on health care for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. It addresses the clinical as well as the systems of delivery of health care. It also provides a practical approach to dealing with the health and well-being of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Chapters written by researchers of the Rehabilitation Research and Training Centre on Developmental Disabilities and Health include the following:
Kruti Acharya, Abigail Schindler and Tamar Heller:
Aging: Demographics, Trajectories and Health System Issues, pp 1423-1432.
David Ervin
Healthcare Financing, pp 177-183
David Erwin and Brian Hennen
Community Healthcare, pp. 229-241
James Rimmer and Kelly Hsieh
Health Promotion, pp1087-1103

National Goals Conference: Health and Wellness Strand

National Goals in Research, Practice and Policy for and with People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Setting a National Agenda for Health and Wellness Research, Practice, and Policy

In August 2015, a National Goals in Research, Policy, and Practice working meeting was held in Washington, DC to summarize the current state of knowledge and identify a platform of national goals, organized by 10 focus areas, in research, practice, and policy in intellectual and developmental disabilities. The products were developed in each strand for a variety of audiences with the overarching goal of advancing a research agenda that will influence policy and practice for and with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities over the next 10 years.

View Health and Wellness Issue Brief, AAIDD Inclusion Journal Article, and Video

EEOC Issues Proposed Rule on ADA Compliance for Wellness Programs

EEOC Issues Proposed Rule on ADA Compliance for Wellness Programs

The U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking today that provides guidance to both employers and employees on how wellness programs offered as part of employers’ group health plans can comply with Title I of the American with Disabilities Act.

Workplace wellness programs are often used to encourage healthier lifestyles or prevent disease. Some of these programs use health risk assessments and biometric screenings to measure blood pressure, cholesterol, and body weight. Incentives such as lower monthly premiums can be rewarded to individuals for participation.

Although the ADA limits the circumstances in which employers may ask employees about their health or require them to undergo medical examinations, it allows such inquiries and exams if they are voluntary and part of an employee health program. 

The EEOC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking clarifies the circumstances in which employers are allowed to obtain medical information from employees under the American with Disabilities Act:

·         If an employee health program seeks information about employee health or medical exams, the program must aim to promote health or prevent disease, and not just collect information.
·         Employees are not required to participate in a wellness program, and they may not be denied health coverage or disciplined if they refuse to participate.  
·         Companies may offer incentives of up to 30 percent of the total cost of employee-only coverage in connection with wellness programs. These programs can include medical examinations or questions about employees’ health (such as questions on a health risk assessment). 
·         Discrimination based on disability is prohibited and individuals with disabilities must be provided with reasonable accommodations that allow them to participate.

The Commission seeks comments from the public that will shape the final regulation.
The preamble includes 6 specific questions on which public comment is requested; public comment on the proposed rule and these 6 questions will inform the final content of the rule. The questions can be found on pages 19-22 of the document.  

Key issues include how voluntary disclosure should be defined in the context of this rule and how — and to what extent — notice requirements under this rule apply.

Comments can be submitted to the Federal Register until

June 19, 2015.
Click here to read the proposal and make comments.

Related Content:
Click to read this set of
Frequently Asked Questions from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Click to read this set of
Frequently Asked Questions from Department of Labor, HHS and the Treasury.
Click to read this set of
Frequently Asked Questions from the HHS Office for Civil Rights.
April 20, 2015

Impact of Adulthood Stage and Social-Environmental Context on Body Mass Index and Physical Activity of Individuals With Intellectual Disability

Kelly Hsieh, Tamar Heller, Julie Bershadsky, and Sarah Taub
Intellectual and Developmental Disability 2015, Vol. 53, No. 2, 100–113

Individuals with intellectual disability (ID) are at risk for obesity and physical inactivity. We analyzed a subset of 2009–2010 National Core Indicators (NCI) database to examine (1) the impact of three adulthood stages– younger (20–39 years), middle (40–59 years), and older (60 years and older) on Body Mass Index (BMI) and physical activity (PA); and (2) the relationship between social-environmental context (i.e., residence type, everyday choices, and community participation) and BMI and PA, with adjustment for individual characteristics of the adults with ID. Findings highlight the need to pay more attention to obesity by providing health education and emphasizing healthy choices. Results also suggest the importance of community participation as a way of promoting more physical activity.

Promoting Collaboration Between Hospice and Palliative Care Providers and Adult Day Services for Individuals With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Corina R. Ronneberg, Lisa Peters-Beumer, Beth Marks, and Alan Factor

Abstract While end-of-life issues are increasingly gaining more attention, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) continue to receive significantly less consideration in research, education, and clinical practice compared with the general population. This is a growing concern especially since the sheer number of persons aging with IDD is expected to double in the next 17 years. Furthermore, policies are shifting to reflect a preference for home and community-based services as an alternative to institutionalization, and it becomes evident that adult day services (ADS) may be ideal settings for receipt of end-of-life care, especially among individuals with IDD. However, end-of-life care and advance planning most commonly occur in long-term care settings for the general population and have historically been less of a priority in ADS and residential services for people with IDD. This article discusses the attitudes of, and collaboration between, ADS and end-of-life providers for aging adults including persons with IDD and explores how ADS may be a great pathway for delivering end-of-life care to the IDD population. Implications and recommendations will also be examined.

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