Grant Received from DASNY to Fund Expansion of Telemedicine to NYC Residences

Constructive Partnership Unlimited (CP-U) successfully received a grant from the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) to fund the expansion of telemedicine to all its residences in the New York City region. Telemedicine was initiated with funding from Staten Island Performing Provider System to provide services in Staten Island OPWDD residences in March 2016 for a 3-month pilot program. Then in an unprecedented move, the Chief Executive Officer of CP-U permitted telemedicine to be implemented in 103 locations across the five boroughs. 

Telemedicine is one resource and mechanism to help CP-U achieve our goals of delivering optimal care. Constructive Partnership Unlimited (CP-U) goals are structured according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Quality Strategy and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s National Quality Strategy. 

1. Make care safer by reducing harm caused while care’s delivered. 

  • Improve support for a culture of safety.
  • Reduce inappropriate and unnecessary care.
  • Prevent or minimize harm in all settings.

2. Help patients and their families be involved as partners in their care.
3. Promote effective communication and coordination of care.
4. Promote effective prevention and treatment of chronic disease.
5. Work with communities to help people live healthily.
6. Make care affordable.

There were 991 acute medical care visits from February 1, 2019 – January 31, 2020. Telemedicine visits accounted for 31% of the total visits (306 telemedicine visits) of which 85% (259 cases) were managed in-house and avoided ER level of care. The most common telemedicine cases were for infection, skin issues, medication issues, and minor trauma. This audio visual capability with telemedicine assists CP-U triage nurses in managing non-emergency medical conditions in the residences when the Primary Care Doctors are not available. Underutilized locations will pilot a program to use the video conferencing equipment for other services: case management, nutrition consultation, behavior health, communication with MCHC for elective follow-up care.  This is to maximize the use of equipment in all the residences.

There is opportunity to improve telemedicine utilization in at least three regions with the goal of reducing avoidable emergency room visits and avoidable admissions. An important development in recognizing the benefit of telemedicine as an alternate delivery system is the deliberation for the reimbursement by OPWDD for telemedicine services.  The leadership of CP-U was instrumental in spearheading and promoting the adoption of this new policy under NYS Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.  Telemedicine could make a significant positive impact on the healthcare financial system for New York.



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Constructive Partnerships Unlimited (Formerly Cerebral Palsy Association of New York State)

40 Rector Street, 15th Floor New York, NY 10006

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