Home > About Magee > Community Needs Assessment Report  > HEALTH NEEDS IDENTIFIED

Share | Print | Email HEALTH NEEDS IDENTIFIED

From these results, we were able to identify several health needs specific to the communities Magee serves, both geographic and special needs. These include substance abuse support; employment opportunities; reliable, consistent transportation; accessible housing; access to medications; education; injury and illness prevention; and wellness.

The following are health needs the Hospital identified, as well as the community resources and programs that already address these needs. As these needs are better addressed by outside organizations, the Hospital will continue to refer patients and community members accordingly. As such, in the scope of the requirements for the CHNA, the Hospital will not be implementing additional strategies to address the following needs.

Substance Abuse Support for People Living with Disabilities

Of the population surveyed, 6.1% indicated they believed drugs or alcohol issues impacted their daily lives, while a survey of Philadelphia County found only 3% of the general population was at risk for problem drinking.1  While these two statistics are not completely comparable, it is clear that significantly more of those surveyed have a negative relationship with substances when compared to Philadelphia County. As such, there is a need to help people living with disabilities overcome or prevent substance abuse.

Magee Rehabilitation currently plays a role in this with the Addictions Mentor Program. This program, which is currently limited to inpatients, is designed to offer those who struggle with addiction issues the opportunity to talk with a specially selected and trained person who has experience as an addictions advocate. The mentors offer their support, accompany patients to Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings held at the hospital, share information and resources, and serve as a connection to the community for patients during their transition after an inpatient stay at Magee.

Beyond the Addictions Mentor Program, Magee Rehabilitation Hospital does not intend to meet this need in the community because there are myriad organizations better suited for substance abuse support for the Hospitals community served. In addition to public and private support groups throughout the area, the City of PhiladelphiaҒs Office of Addiction Services (OAS) plans, funds and monitors substance abuse prevention, intervention, treatment and recovery support services in Philadelphia. The OAS manages and compiles an up-to-date list of addictions services and programs offered throughout the area, as well as special populations served. These institutions provide specialized care to meet this particular health need of the Hospitals communities served.

Employment Opportunities for People Living with Disabilities

Of the population surveyed, less than 20% indicated wages and earnings as their primary source of income, compared with more than 71% of the population of Philadelphia County.2 This difference is staggering and statistically significant. While many of the people surveyed cited disability as the primary reason they were not working, a large group expressed the desire to work. As such, there is a need to train and support those people who are living with disabilities and looking for employment.

While Magee Rehabilitation believes this is a significant need in the communities the Hospital serves, it does not intend to address it directly as there are a variety of organizations throughout the geographic area that currently provide these services, including:

The Office of Vocational Rehabilitation offers services and compensation for Pennsylvania residents with disabilities. The Ticket to Work program helps to reduce the barriers to employment for people with disabilities by emphasizing work incentives and more choices of services leading to work or better wages. Programs Employing People is an organization that offers education, jobs and support for people with mild and moderate disabilities. PEP also offers production work center options for local individuals that pays for assembly line work with multiple business contracts, and matches people with employers in the community. Similarly, the Sierra Group offers an array of recruiting, consulting and training services designed to reverse the high unemployment rate of people living with disabilities.

In addition to helping individuals with disabilities secure jobs, there are also organizations that provide training. InspiriTec offers vocational training programs to enable people living with disabilities to gain skills and jobs in the Information Technology field. Programs include computer assembly and repair/networking, applications development and programming, and Web Design and Development.

Magee often refers patients and their families to these resources.

Reliable and Consistent Transportation for People Living with Disabilities

A majority of those surveyed rely on public transportation, family members or friends for transportation. While many respondents are satisfied with their current means of transportation, many expressed frustration that their current mode of transportation made them late to appointments, did not allow them to go where they needed to go, and did not allow them to travel on their own time. Additionally, when asked what type of adaptive equipment they needed but did not have, many respondents indicated they needed larger vehicles to hold their wheelchairs. As such, there is a need in the community to provide people living with disabilities with more convenient, reliable and consistent methods of transportation.

Through the use of wheelchair accessible vans, Magee currently has the capability to take outpatients into the community or from the Riverfront Outpatient Center to the main hospital. Magee will also provide patients with transportation resources, and in some instances teaches patients to use public transportation with their functional limitations. Beyond these activities, Magee does not intend to meet this health need as the Hospital is unable to provide transportation to the entire community. Currently, there are several organizations that seek to meet this need.

SEPTA, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, serves Philadelphia and surrounding counties. SEPTA offers a Disability Hotline and Accessible Services. All SEPTA buses are accessible for individuals living with disabilities, and there are currently more than 100 accessible train stations. Other publicly-operated transportation services that offer accessible services include New Jersey Transit and Delaware Transit Corporation. SEPTA, New Jersey Transit and DART also offer Paratransit Services. These services are for people with disabilities who are unable to use regular accessible fixed-route services for some or all of their transportation needs. With Paratransit, individuals can travel within the region where service is offered.

Regional public transportation services, such as Rabbit Transit and Pottstown Urban Transit, offer specific programs for people living with disabilities, including accessible fixed routes, Persons with Disabilities shared ride programs and others. The Philadelphia Corporation for Aging offers Attendant Transportation Service, which provides door-through door and upper floor assistance to impaired older adults, and the Medical Assistance Transportation Program provides transportation to any health care service covered by Medical Assistance, such as doctorҒs visits, pharmacy for prescriptions, therapy, etc.

Additionally, there are many privately-operated accessible transportation services available throughout the geographic community served. Freedom Taxi is a taxi company serving the area that offers wheelchair accessible vehicles. Regional privately-operated accessible transportation services include TransNet, ROVER Community Transportation, Bucks County Transport, Delaware County Community Transit and the Riders Club Cooperative. Each of these services provides transportation for people living with disabilities.

Magee often refers patients and their families to these resources.

Accessible Housing

While a majority of respondents were satisfied with their current housing, a common complaint for those that were not was a lack of accessibility. Additionally, when asked if there was any equipment they needed but did not currently have, the most common request among respondents was a ramp for their home or apartment. As such, there is a need in the community to provide more accessible housing and/or make housing units more accessible for people living with disabilities.

While Magee Rehabilitation believes this is a significant need in the communities the Hospital serves, it does not intend to address it directly as there are a variety of organizations throughout the geographic area that currently provide these services.

The Philadelphia Housing Authority offers public housing options for the residents of Philadelphia with financial need, including units that have various features to meet the needs of individuals with mobility, hearing, or vision impairments. A full-time accessibility coordinator is on staff to ensure that individuals with disabilities received a preferred spot on the housing waiting lists and receive reasonable accommodations to meet their needs, including wheelchair lifts, enlarged entrances, visual smoke detector systems, or space for a live-in aide if required. Other housing authorities in the area, including the Delaware County Housing Authority, Montgomery County Housing Authority and Chester County Housing Authority, offer similar accommodations for those living with disabilities.

The Philadelphia Office of Housing and Community Development (OHCD) established the Housing and Disability Technical Assistance Program, TAP, in December of 1999.  TAP provides the most up-to-date information on accessible housing, fair housing laws and regulations, financial and technical resources, model projects and other issues related to housing for people with disabilities in the City of Philadelphia. TAP includes a Home Finder and the Philly Primer, which provides information on home buying.

There are also several private, non-profit organizations in the community served that provide these services. Inglis House provides affordable and independent living options for 297 residents. They provide affordable independent living opportunities to Philadelphians with disabilities in units which exceed ADA guidelines. Inglis House properties also include options for nursing and rehabilitative care and day services for those in need. Liberty Resources, Inc. is a non-profit consumer driven organization that advocates and promotes Independent Living for persons with disabilities. Similarly, the Center for Independent Living of South Central Pennsylvania provides supportive services to persons with disabilities who wish to increase or maintain their level of independence in the community and at home, and offer housing advocacy.

In addition to helping people secure accessible housing, there are also community resources available that advocate on behalf of renters. The Legal Clinic for the Disabled (LCD) provides legal support for tenants in housing issues. LCD is housed in the offices of Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, and provides free high-quality legal services to low-income people with physical disabilities and to the deaf and hard of hearing in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties.

Magee often refers patients and their families to these resources.

Access to Medications

While a majority of respondents indicated they are always able to get the medication they need, 30% indicated there have been times when they were unable. This is primarily due to cost. The surveyed population is significantly more likely to be unable to receive the medication they need due to high cost when compared to adults in Philadelphia County.3 As such, there is a need to help people living with disabilities receive the medication they need, regardless of cost.

While Magee Rehabilitation believes this is a significant need in the communities the Hospital serves, it does not intend to address it directly as there are a variety of organizations throughout the geographic area that currently provide these services.

Residents of Pennsylvania can have access to a statewide Prescription Assistance Program. It is a free discount prescription card that provides individuals with prescription medication savings of up to 75%. The Partnership for Prescription Assistance helps qualifying individuals without prescription drug coverage get the medications they need for free or nearly free.

In New Jersey, Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Aged and Disabled and Senior Gold are state-funded prescription programs that help eligible New Jersey residents with the cost of prescribed medications. National resources that are also available locally include the USA Drug plan, which is a prescription drug discount card, and Veterans Affairs Medical Centers.

Magee often refers patients and their families to these resources.