Disability rights advocates ask governor to make sure those with disabilities have equal access to healthcare
Disability rights advocates are asking Governor Andy Beshear to help make sure Kentuckians with disabilities have equal access to healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kentucky Protection & Advocacy, a client-directed disability rights agency, along with individuals with disabilities, their family members, interested associations, and groups wrote to Beshear on April 7 to request the Commonwealth provide guidance in the event there are not enough medical supplies to care for all COVID-19 patients.
While the group is heartened to see the curve in Kentucky is flattening due to Beshear’s leadership, predictive models continue to indicate there will be a shortage of ventilators. If this or other shortages occur, medical professionals will have to choose who gets life-saving care and who does not.
“History shows us that individuals with disabilities will likely be sent to the back of the line for medical care. That amounts to a death sentence for individuals with disabilities who contract COVID-19,” noted P&A Executive Director Jeff Edwards.
The group has urged the administration to take action to secure equal care for all Kentuckians. They have asked Governor Beshear to issue guidance to hospitals and other healthcare providers that complies with their obligations under the ADA and other federal disability non-discrimination laws.
This guidance should be public and should address the allocation of scarce medical treatment during this or any similar crisis. A copy of the letter is available at http://www.kypa.net/