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Idaho Falls disability services agencies discontinuing service

One Idaho Falls developmental disability services agency will drastically cut services and another will close for good.

Both agencies on Wednesday said Medicaid cuts are partially to blame.

Options Inc. said 31 people will be out of a job when the adult day care and life skills development program closes at the end of August.

The agency said 75 disabled clients must seek life skills services elsewhere.

Another service provider, Transitions Inc., will end most development services for adults next month as well.

For those facing the challenges of disability, it means an uncertain future.

13-year-old Jakey Giglio is autistic and was born with Down syndrome. On Wednesday, he danced to music in his Ammon bedroom while mom Holly Giglio laughed. Giglio is happy in the moment, but the reality of the problems Jakey will face when he grows up is always on her mind.

“Everything that gets cut right now, that’s just going to mean there’s going to be less for when Jakey gets there, and that is scary,” said Giglio.

It’s scary for Kelly Keele, too. Keele is the director of Transitions Inc., a developmental disabilities agency in Idaho Falls. By August 10, most of the agency’s services for disabled adults will end.

“There’s no way for us to run the individualized programs that we know these people need with what Medicaid is now willing to reimburse us,” said Keele.

Idaho legislators in 2011 elected to combine group and individual rates for services like therapy.

“We don’t get paid enough per hour of service to cover the cost of providing that service,” he said.

The workers at Options Inc. wrote this e-mail.

“We wish our participants, their families and our staff the best and hope they are able to transition to other participating service providers as smoothly as possible.”

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