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Long-Term Community Supports for Individuals With Co-Occurring Disabilities After Traumatic Brain Injury: Cost Effectiveness and Project-Based Intervention

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 February 2012

Mark Ylvisaker*
College of Saint Rose, Albany, New York, United States of America.
Timothy Feeney
School & Community Supports, Schenectady, New York, United States of America.
Melissa Capo
School & Community Supports, Schenectady, New York, United States of America.
*Address for correspondence: Mark Ylvisaker, Ph.D. 1171 Van Antwerp Road, Schenectady, New York 12309, USA.


Outcome studies have established that successful community living is compromised in the population of individuals with traumatic brain injury and chronic behavioural difficulties along with a co-occurring diagnosis of substance abuse and/or mental health disorder. Two studies are presented. The first was aimed at describing long-term outcome of a sample of individuals (N = 51) served by the New York State Department of Health TBI Medicaid Waiver Program. Each of the participants was diagnosed with TBI plus either substance abuse or a mental health disorder, or both. Because of significant behavioural challenges, all of the participants were in a restrictive living setting the year before enrolment in the waiver program (e.g., nursing or correctional facility). Data on community living arrangement, self-reported community integration experiences, and costs are presented. Results indicate that most of the participants (41 of the 46 who were alive and living in state) continued to live in the community 8 to 9 years after commencement of community support services. The participants' community integration responses were generally positive and cost data demonstrate substantial savings to the state for this cohort. Comparing prewaiver costs in residential settings with most recent (2005) costs for community supports, there was an average daily cost savings of US$137 per person for the 1996 cohort and US$144 per person for the 1997 cohort. The second study explored the use of project-oriented interventions and supports in an agency that provides community support services to this dual diagnosis population. Project-oriented services are described as meeting many needs common to this dual-diagnosis population. Clinical staff (N = 11) and a sample of waiver participants (N = 7) were surveyed. Results suggest that the use of personally meaningful projects can become a clinical habit for staff and that projects are generally judged by participants to be a meaningful use of time, and significant in giving them an opportunity to play an expert role and to help others.

Brain Impairment , Volume 8 , Issue 3 , 01 December 2007 , pp. 276 - 292
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2007

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