Yamada Calls DDS's Drop of Federal Appeal 'Pragmatic'

Letting go the appeal over funding for Sonoma Development Center will help agencies 'focus on a plan to restore the health and safety' of residents, she says.

Assemblymember Mariko Yamada responded Friday to the state Department of Developmental Services’ (DDS) announcement that its federal decertification appeal regarding Sonoma Developmental Center (SDC) has been dropped. This facility in a tiny community of Eldridge is in Yamada’s assembly district. It provides care for people with severe developmental disabilities.

SDC  has been under scrutiny because of ongoing problems with unreported cases of alleged abuse, including patient sexual assault, and also because of alleged lack of investigations.

Late last year, Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) decertified 10 SDC residential units, a move that would prohibit them from receiving federal funding.

Under the agreement announced Friday, SDC retains funding for six of the ten residences, and will work with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to regain certification for the other four.

“Today’s announcement signals a pragmatic approach to addressing SDC’s ongoing problems,” Yamada said.  “Rather than a protracted appeals process that endangers funding for the entire facility, the Department of Development Services and CMS can now focus on a plan to restore the health and safety of all center residents.”



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