Archive for December, 2011

CRUCIAL YOU ATTEND — Local Hearings Held By State Legislators

2012 is a critical year!! The General Assembly Session will make decisions that will affect the availability of needed services and programs that ensure community living and prevent unnecessary institutionalization of thousands of Virginians with disabilities and senior adults!

The governor’s proposal for the FY 2013-2014 two-year state budget includes deep cuts in Virginia’s Medicaid waiver program and other disability services. If adopted, the cap on EDCD waiver personal assistance hours will drop from 56 to 48 per week. The Medicaid waiver financial eligibility criteria will drop from a monthly income of 300% of SSI ($2,094) to 250% of SSI ($1,745). People currently receiving waiver services could become ineligible, placing more pressure on local government in-home services, which are also slated for state budget cuts! Other state disability and aging programs would be cut or eliminated, including the Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

Your help is needed to stop these cuts!! Please take time to attend local hearings and speak out – ask state legislators to oppose cuts in Medicaid waiver and other programs and reverse cuts made over the past 2 years!

REGIONAL BUDGET HEARING – Senate Finance and House Appropriations
Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 10 a.m. – GMU – Johnson Ctr. (Dewberry Hall), 4400 University Dr., Fairfax. Speaker registration begins at 9 a.m. Arrive early!

LOCAL DELEGATION HEARINGS – Speak directly to your own legislators
Wed, Jan 4, 2012 at 7 p.m. – Arlington Delegation, 2100 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington, County Bd. Rm. (3rd Floor) – Arrive by 6:30 p.m. to register to speak.

Wed, Jan 4, 2012 at 6 p.m. – Loudoun Delegation, Loudoun County Admin Bldg, 1 Harrison St., S.E., Leesburg in the Board of Supervisors Auditorium (1st Floor) – Register to speak at the door.

Sat, Jan 7, 2012 at 9 a.m. – Fairfax Delegation at the Fairfax County Govt. Ctr., 12000 Govt. Ctr. Pkwy., Fairfax, VA 22035 in the Board Auditorium — Call Clerk to the Board at 703.324.3151 for speaker number or sign up at door.

State legislators have the power to reject/reverse these budget cuts. But, for them to do that, they must hear from you!!

For more information or for assistance preparing testimony, contact Doris at ECNV at 703-525-3268 or via email at Your peer counselor or other ECNV staff can also assist.


December 31, 2011 at 11:23 am Leave a comment

My Cochlear Implant (CI, Part 7) – Haven’t I done this before?

Tony and ECNV Executive Director David Burds
At my appointment on December 1 at Johns Hopkins, there were times when I was thinking I’ve done this same type of testing a bunch of times, why am I doing it again? The answer is, very simply, because things change! It, kind of, seems odd that one can have such a vastly different level of hearing after such a relatively short period of time (in this case, about six months); but then I think about my disability, Friedreich’s Ataxia (FA), and it does not seem so odd.

FA is a progressive disability and in my case the hearing issues get worse at a much quicker rate than the physical issues. That is certainly not to say that my physical issues are not a problem (I do use a wheelchair or scooter for mobility), but my hearing can change on an almost daily basis whereas changes in my physical disability may not be noticeable for several months. Heck, I could take the exact same audiology test for a week and I’d probably get about five different results.

So since that is the case, and I know it well, I took an active and honest role in various audiology tests. I have no doubt that sometimes the results from those tests are confounding to my audiologist, but she does her best to help me (thanks, Courtney!).

The bottom line is that after getting a cochlear implant I am able to hear and understand what is being said to me. I still have better and worse hearing days but they are not as often as they used to be, and the fact is I can hear and understand much of what is said to me; and that is not something that I have done before or at least not for many years!

December 5, 2011 at 9:10 pm 8 comments

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