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Working Together: An Initiative to Improve Services and Supports for Persons with Disabilities

Why crowd-sourcing?

Online crowd-sourcing offered several advantages:

  • We can quickly generate, refine, and prioritize ideas.
  • We can overcome disciplinary silos and expert biases.
  • You can contribute your expertise without making a big time commitment.
  • You can work with a large, diverse, and nationwide group.
  • You can draw attention to ideas or solutions that others may not be aware of.
  • You can review a growing compendium of suggestions from other experts.

Could participants take part anonymously?

Working Together was designed to be a collaborative effort where contributors received acknowledgement for their efforts, so anonymous participation in the Challenge was strongly discouraged.

Was the Academy interested only in social insurance ideas, or were ideas on other related topics also welcomed? For example, could participants submit an idea about housing or transportation? Could they talk about the importance of coordination among state agencies?

We’re interested in a wide range of submissions that relate to promoting health and wellness, independence, inclusion, and workforce participation among a diverse population of working-age individuals with disabilities. Within that focus, responses may touch on a range of specific areas, potentially including federal and/or state social insurance programs, long-term supports and services, health care, housing, transportation, employment and training services and vocational rehabilitation. We’re particularly interested in ideas relating to Medicare, Medicaid, and other long-term supports and services needs, but submissions are not limited to those areas.

It seems like there are an infinite number of potential responses. What kinds of submissions are you really looking for?

We’re looking for proven or at least testable solutions. Most of all, remember that we’re looking for a handful of really good ideas, not just one silver bullet.

How long should submissions be?

Submissions need to be succinct: 250 words or less. This limit is designed to make it easier for participants to review and rank submissions.

How does this challenge fit with the Academy’s other work?

Working Together is a key part of the Academy’s year-long celebration program around the 50th anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid, both of which play a vital role in the lives of millions of Americans with disabilities. This project aims to complement various efforts to serve the needs of individuals with disabilities.

Other questions?

Let us know! Please send an email to Kristine Quinio at kquinio@nasi.org.