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Publication Date



Behavioral Health Issue Brief Series No. 17


Civil Rights; Long Term Care; Legal; Disabilities; Medicaid & SCHIP; Americans with Disabilities Act


This analysis reviews the key elements of the United States Supreme Court's 1999 decision in Olmstead v L.C. as well as Federal implementation guidelines issued by the United States Department and Human Services. The Olmstead decision interprets the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA," PL 101-336), whose requirements apply to the use of all public funds. However, Medicaid represents the single largest source of public funding for both institutional and non-institutional services for persons with disabilities. As a result, when states expend Medicaid funds on care for persons with disabilities, two independent sets of legal requirements are triggered: those contained in the ADA, and those included in Federal Medicaid law. Therefore, this analysis also reviews recent judicial decisions concerning Medicaid coverage requirements in the case of institutional and noninstitutional for beneficiaries with disabilities.


Funder: SAMHSA.

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