Mentoring Peers with MS or Spinal Cord Injuries

A new ICS program is training people with spinal cord injuries and multiple sclerosis to mentor other people living with these conditions. Mentors form supportive relationships with “mentees” who have a similar diagnosis, helping them adjust to the changes and challenges their conditions entail, work through barriers to independence and well-being, and take an active role in their own care and their community. The mentoring program is built upon the fundamental belief that all people have strengths. 
“The training was great,” said Tony, a newly minted mentor, shown in the photo above. “I see a lot of potential to go above and beyond. People need our help – we may be the only people they feel they can reach out to right now. I loved what I saw today – and I really like being able to help someone express themselves.” Learn more about this program here.
ICS member Dan Winchester

Members Focus on Stopping $1.5 Trillion in Cuts to Medicaid this Fall

Like millions of Americans, ICS member Dan Winchester opposed the health care bill, defeated in July, that would have ended the Medicaid entitlement and cut billions from the program. As Congress returns to Washington this month to work on a proposed budget that would cut an estimated $1.5 trillion from Medicaid, please watch and share a series of short videos of ICS members explaining what Medicaid means to them. Watch Dan's video here. Watch and share more in the "Medicaid is My Freedom" series here

Come Meet ICS Chief Operating Officer

Regina Estela November 2! 

ICS Chief Operating Officer Regina Estela will take part in a breakfast panel discussion for women who lead nonprofit organizations on Thursday, November 2, in Midtown Manhattan. Take this opportunity to connect with some of the most powerful women in the Greater NYC nonprofit community and engage with a panel of leaders on the topics that matter to you most.
An interview with each panelist will be published prior to the breakfast. You can read Regina’s interview here.
The November 2 breakfast is part of the #NonprofitWomenLead campaign organized by Solid Benefit Guidance. For more information email or register online at Follow event and campaign updates on LinkedIn at #NPWomenLead.
ICS Chief Operating Officer Regina Estela
FDNY EMT Recruits ICS!
For some people, having their wheelchair left behind in an emergency is tantamount to having part of their body left behind. A stressful situation like calling 911 becomes even more stressful because people with disabilities are often forced to leave their wheelchair, which is so vital to their independence, on the street and vulnerable to theft.
This summer ICS’s Rehab Repairs and Member Programming teams worked with the Fire Department’s EMT Division on a new initiative to recover and transport wheelchairs after someone is taken to the hospital. Led by ICS Repairs Manager Viannette Oquendo, the teams met with FDNY’s Chief of Planning Fred Villani and his unit at Fort Totten, bringing a group of chairs from our clinic, explaining how different models work, and how to safely secure and lift the chairs without damaging them.
“We didn’t have a way to transport electric wheelchairs from the scene of an emergency,” Chief Villani explains, “This test showed us how we could use our medical evacuation vehicles to pick up the chairs.” This is great news for New Yorkers who use wheelchairs. Watch a News12 story about this new service here.
Provider Relations Contacts
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:
Carmen Galvan, Provider Relations Representative:
Eva Rosa, Credentialing Supervisor:
Specialized Care for ICS Members with Dementia
The ICS dementia program manages many members, even those who sometimes engage in “distressing behaviors,” with non-pharmacological interventions, helping to avoid medication side effects that can increase the member’s risk of falls or even exacerbate cognitive loss. We do this by focusing on each individual, getting to know what their unmet needs are, and capitalizing on their strengths. 
ICS dementia program care managers are trained and certified by the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners. The program is led by Nettie Harper, an expert in the non-pharmacological care and management of people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, and a professional with two decades of experience in this field. To learn more about the ICS dementia program, listen to an interview with Nettie here.
Free Home Modifications for People with Disabilities
The Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities is looking for people who can benefit from Project Open House, which arranges and pays for some home modifications for low-income New Yorkers with permanent disabilities. Applications for the current round of funding are being accepted through September 28. If you know someone who might benefit, more information is available at the link above or from Ramakrishna Kadukuntla at the Mayor's Office for People with Disabilities. Phone him at 212.788.3121 or email him at
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.
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