From Anger to Laughter

Sit-down Comedian Damon Rozier Tells it Like it Is!
ICS member Damon Rozier was not always a comedian. It took a motorcycle accident that left him unable to walk and bitingly angry to bring out the very funny man he is today. In this riveting, alternately serious and side-splitting interview with Independence Radio, Damon tells host Stephanie Wallace (pictured with Damon, above) about his post-injury journey from drug dealer to professional comedian and proud dad. Listen to Damon's story here.
You'll also want to check out and share Independence Radio podcasts on timely topics including How to Talk to Your Doctor, Staying Out of the Hospital, and The Importance of Self-Advocacy. We upload new podcasts every few weeks, so follow us on SoundCloud and check back frequently for the best talk anywhere on what's on the minds of people with disabilities, older adults and the people who care for and love them.

Two New Laws Affect Family Caregivers 

The Caregiver Advise, Record and Enable (CARE) Act, which went into effect across New York State in April, requires hospitals to effectively communicate with and support family caregivers when a patient is discharged. Specifically, the CARE Act requires hospitals to: record the name of the family caregiver in the patient’s medical record; inform the caregiver when the patient is to be discharged; at least 24 hours before discharge, consult with the caregiver and provide them with a discharge plan describing the patient’s care needs; instruct the family caregiver about the medical tasks he or she will need to perform for the patient at home, including a live or recorded demonstration from a hospital employee. The goal of this new law is to improve post-hospital care and prevent unnecessary re-hospitalizations. You can learn more about these new requirements here.
In May, New York City residents who are caregivers gained new protections when the City’s Human Rights law was expanded to prohibit workplace discrimination against employees who are caring for family members or caring for anyone in their home. You can learn more about these new protections here.
Faces of Independence Celebrates ICS Members
Thank you for being part of the ICS community, where we celebrate our members every day. Please enjoy this short video and help us continue to grow. 

Enjoying the Moment Despite Dementia

As our population ages and the number of people with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia grows, new therapeutic recreational programs are being created to serve them – everything from visits with therapy animals, to gardening, poetry and music programs. This can only be a good thing for both patients and caregivers; faced with so much loss, moments of enjoyment can ease the strain and mean a great deal in the long run.
New York City offers many such programs, most of which are free. Learn about them here.
It's Easy to Verify Eligibility
If you are an ICS provider and need to verify a member's eligibilty, just call 1.877.ICS.2525 and provide the member's name and date of birth.
Medicare Rights Center to Honor  Rick Surpin
ICS Founder and President Rick Surpin will be honored October 17 at the Annual Awards Dinner of the Medicare Rights Center. Rick is a nationally recognized expert on health care policy and advocate for services for people with physical disabilities. Please join the ICS community on this special occasion. More information and tickets to the dinner are available here.

LGBTQ and Need Home Care? It's not That Easy

A recent study found that adults who are LGBT or Q often find it difficult to get culturally-competent home care. Interviews with people with a range of disabilities and chronic health conditions, revealed that some LGBT or Q people avoid home care despite a clear need for it, due to “fears related to disclosure of their sexual and/or gender identities,” and how that might affect their treatment. The research also revealed a glaring hole in education and training on the part of the home care industry. Read more here.

How to Make a Referral

Want to refer someone who could benefit from ICS’s services? Our new online referral system makes it easy to provide us with the required information, and any additional details you wish. It also means better service, allowing our Intake Department to quickly contact your clients to begin the enrollment process. To use the ICS referral system, click here or go to and use the “Get Started” tab at the top of the page.  

Key Provider Relations Staff

Our partnership with our providers in meeting the needs of our plan participants is very important. The ICS Provider Relations Department has responsive, knowledgeable staff who can answer questions and offer assistance. Key contacts are below.  
Deana Lawson, Vice President for Contracting & Provider Relations – 646.653.6188
Bolivar Altamirano, Manager, Provider Relations – 646.653.6243
Carmen GalvanProvider Relations Representative – 646.653.6436
Eva Rosa, Credentialing Supervisor – 212.584.2505
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