A $350 million budget cut approved by state lawmakers went into effect in December, affecting an estimated 60,000 children with special needs in Texas. The cuts targeted Medicaid reimbursement rates to early childhood intervention therapists and providers.
Texas House Speaker Joe Straus from San Antonio previously said reversing the cuts would be a top priority for the current legislative session, but it’s still unclear whether other lawmakers will follow suit.
Without the support of early childhood intervention therapists that Medicaid covered, many providers – particularly those in rural areas – are unable to offer the same level of care.
How can providers and therapists continue to serve children who have disabilities, despite mounting financial losses?
- Holly Grogan, director of the Brighton Center's Early Childhood Intervention Program
- Linda Tapia, CEO of Easterseals San Antonio
- Zaida Yzaguirre, director of Early Childhood Intervention at the Center for Health Care Services
- Shalonda Alexander, mother of child who recently graduated from an ECI program in San Antonio
- Ryan Poppe, reporter for Texas Public Radio