Heather Donnell joined Community Support Network, Inc. (CSNI) as the Director of Education and Advocacy as of May 9, 2016. Ms. Donnell has a deep understanding of the legislative process and working with families of people with developmental disabilities.
Prior to her appointment at CSNI, Donnell was a family advocate who most recently co-founded the NH Pediatric Nursing Care Campaign.
During this campaign she worked directly with families that are not receiving all or any of their approved in home nursing hours. Families are required to provide care entirely alone or with minimal help to medically fragile children because nursing agencies have not been able to hire nursing with low reimbursement rates. Ms. Donnell helped to advocate for these families and worked collaboratively with DHHS, DRC, and other commissions in testifying to help change the Medicaid reimbursement rate so the agencies will be able to hire and retain nurses.
Ms. Donnell recently helped create SB 439 to form a study commission on the nursing shortage in NH.
On a personal note she has two children a daughter and a son with special needs. Her son has Down syndrome as well as a feeding tube and a tracheostomy. He is a very active boy that is active in his community and included at school. Ms. Donnell has helped advocate for many services for her son in and out of school including, therapies, ABA behavior therapy, and most recently- nursing. In her own words, “I have a passion of helping other families and individuals with developmental disabilities.”
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