The Best States To Live In If You Have A Kid With Special Needs

Only fifteen states provide support services to a significant number of families with children who have disabilities, per United Cerebral Palsy’s The Case For Inclusion report. Recently released, it tracks the how well Medicaid programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia serve those with developmental and intellectual disabilities.

These are the 10 states serving the highest number of families that have kids with disabilities; they include a mix of states with both big and small populations, along with richer and poorer states in terms of median family income (New Hampshire is the second richest, for instance, while Arizona is considered less affluent):

1. Alabama

2. Wisconsin

3. New Hampshire

4. Arizona

5. Montana

6. Louisiana

7. Minnesota

8. Vermont

9. New York

10. California

The states where Medicaid supports the lowers number of families that have kids with special needs: Idaho, Iowa, Arkansas, Illinois and Maine. Sadly, this may not be news if you live in one of those states.

In general, the states providing the best Medicaid services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are Arizona, New Hampshire, Oregon, Vermont and California; the lowest-ranking ones are  Virginia, Illinois, Texas, Arkansas and Mississippi.

The heartening news is that despite our continuously challenged economy, many states have made real improvements in the quality of services provided—although as the report notes, “There is still work to be in ensuring that kids and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities can enjoy the same freedoms and quality of life as all Americans.”  Especially in terms of the care our children will need down the road; waiting lists for residential and community services remain high.

Support more quality Medicaid programming for those with disabilities by citing this report and contacting your Congressional rep (find contact info here).

From my other blog:

Another one of those unexpected milestones

How not to encourage your child’s obsession

How did you tell friends and family your child had special needs?


Image of U.S. flag in heart shape via Shutterstock

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