Having the freedom to choose who cares for you is important to most people, especially to Lakeland Care member, Kayla. Kayla is a young woman in her early 20’s who has autism and is extremely sensitive to sounds and touch.
Kayla joined Lakeland Care and the Family Care program after graduating high school. Throughout Kayla’s enrollment with Lakeland Care, she participated in several day programs and used various transportation providers. Due to the rural location of Kayla’s home, transportation options were limited. Kayla is sensitive to noises and she was having trouble with the long, noisy bus rides.
Concerned for Kayla, her care team worked with Lakeland Care’s Member Supports Consultant who assisted in developing a positive support plan to better assist Kayla. After brainstorming with day program staff, Kayla’s natural supports, and care team, a plan was created to support Kayla’s transportation needs differently, which has been very successful! Kayla no longer rides the bus and she receives transportation from her family and other supports through self-directed supports (SDS). Since the change in transportation providers occurred, Kayla has not experienced any emotional upsets during transportation or at day services. Kayla’s mother also reports that Kayla has been in much better spirits and seems happier.
Since joining Lakeland Care, Kayla has been using self-directed supports for respite services and supportive home care, so adding transportation to her SDS plan was a simple solution. Kayla does not do well with change, so having family help with transportation made the transition easier for Kayla and she felt safer with her family. When asking Kayla what she likes best about self-directing her own supports, she will tell you “having the freedom to choose who cares for me.” Kayla likes having a say in her every day routine. She’s able to set up her preferences, choose what programs work best for her and decides what she wants to do on her days. Kayla’s Registered Nurse Care Manager, Sandi, said “Kayla’s independence has grown throughout her use of self-directed supports and it has helped her increase her independence with her activities of daily living.”
Like most people, Kayla likes to be in control of her life as much as possible and by using self-directed supports helps Kayla be in control of her care plan and services. Kayla continues to enjoy living with her family and likes having her family support her with her care. For Kayla, SDS is the option of choice.