Nashville, Tennessee (WTVF) — A situation that many of us can relate to. What happens when a loved one who can’t live alone loses her only caregiver?That’s the situation a woman with autism finds herself in today.
“Put another piece in there, Mercury,” Chris Milfred smiled as he watched his daughter put the puzzle together. “That’s perfect!”
Mercury is autistic.
“She’s pretty high-functioning,” Chris said. “She is very quick with things of that nature, like electronics and computers. I don’t think I can do it.It is necessary if she lives completely alone.”
Mercury has lived with his mother for a long time. Her mother passed away just a few days before Christmas.
“Mercury was sitting there with her,” Chris said. “She was probably there hours before her friend came. She was traumatized enough. I wanted to see my mother, but they wouldn’t let me into the room.”
With the death of his mother, Mercury soon lost his only caregiver and home.
“I didn’t want her in the system.
Chris said he has two children in his house and Mercury feels too insecure to stay there. She is at the hotel while Chris tries to navigate what to do next.
“It took me a week to find out what was available to her and how to move forward,” he said.
The Intellectually Disabled Division spoke to NewsChannel 5 about what happens in situations like this. DIDD said in a statement:
“If the person has a diagnosis of an intellectual and/or developmental disability, they may be eligible for urgent consideration into the Employment and Community First Choice Program. provide long-term services and support to people who have suddenly lost a caregiver, DIDD will refer that person to an identified managed care organization (ECF CHOICES program administered through three state MCOs). have a managed care organization to quickly escalate the process and confirm service eligibility criteria.
“Obviously, the most important thing for us is to limit trauma and quickly stabilize both care and housing for those affected. We have identified care organizations and adult protection services that, through well-established networks of community providers, can provide emergency housing options as needed. The person works to develop a long-term plan of care and services.
In the Mercury situation, Chris said his daughter has long sought independence. Meanwhile, Chris sets up his GoFundMe to establish a permanent home for Mercury and possibly pay for hotel accommodation until he finds job training. His GoFundMe can be found here.
Chris said Mercury must stay in Middle Tennessee no matter what options they find.
“United Healthcare said they could place her pretty quickly, but if it’s in a particular location, it might take longer,” he said. I don’t want to put it in because she won’t have anyone.I hope Mercury is as autonomous as possible because she loves doing things her own way. support.”