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Frequently Asked Questions
Why is the Waiting List changing?
Simply put, the current Waiting List operation does not work. The process needs altered for many reasons, but most importantly, to identify those who have a current (within twelve months) unmet need and attempt to pair them with more timely resources or alternative services as available. People with developmental disabilities and their families have repeatedly stated that the Waiting List is overly complex and in need of simplification. The current Waiting List confuses people with disabilities and their families, misleads advocates, and hinders efforts by policymakers to direct resources to where they are needed most.
Why is it better?
The new Waiting List process individually identifies those who have a current need for waiver services through the uniform statewide use of the Waiting List Assessment Tool. The same tool will be used to assess need across county lines to ensure consistency throughout the state. These changes can clarify the waiver enrollment process and lead to increased availability of services for people with developmental disabilities and their families.
Will the new Waiting List process guarantee that people will now receive a waiver?
No. The rule update would only change the operation of the waiver Waiting List. By doing so, the State and county boards are creating a more efficient, transparent, and effective process for meeting the immediate or current needs of a person. These needs may be met through a variety of resources that may or may not include a waiver.
Will people get IO Waivers faster?
No. But their needs will be assessed by their local county board and they will use available resources in the county to meet the person’s needs. If the person’s needs cannot be met by available resources in the county, the county board will add the person’s name to the new Waiting List and will identify the waiver that addresses the unmet need.
If someone currently has a waiver, could this process take it away?
No. There is nothing in the new rule that would allow a waiver to be taken away based on the results of the Waiting List Assessment Tool.
What happens if someone has a current need for services?
If a person has an immediate or a current need for a service in the next twelve months, they should contact the local county board where they live and request the uniform statewide assessment.
If a person has a current (unmet) need for a service within the next twelve months, does that mean they will be enrolled on a waiver within twelve months?
No. The County Board will work with them to address their needs using alternate resources, as
available, and will maintain contact with them to plan for possible enrollment.
How will the waiver order of enrollment be determined using the new Waiting List?
People selected for locally-funded HCBS waivers will be enrolled in this order (the earliest of either the status date or date of request shall take precedence in instances where two people meet the same enrollment status):
What happens if someone has an emergency?
If at any time, a person is in an emergency situation, they may contact their local county board. As always, the county board is required to address the needs of people who present an emergency situation. The services offered to mitigate the risk may or may not be a waiver. The new Waiting List will identify these situations as people having an “immediate need.”
What does “immediate need” mean? How will a person know if they have one?
An ‘Immediate need" means a person is in a situation that creates a risk of substantial harm to themselves, their caregiver, or another person if action is not taken within 30 calendar days to mitigate the risk. If at any time, a person or their guardian thinks that they have an immediate need, they may contact their local county board and request an assessment using the Waiting List Assessment Tool. As always, the county board is required to address the needs of people who present an emergency situation.
What does “current need” mean? How will a person know if they have one?
A "Current need" means a person has a qualified unmet need for home and community-based service, within twelve months, as determined by their county board based upon a documented assessment using the Waiting List Assessment Tool. Once it is determined that they have a current need, a status date (the day/time the assessment was completed) will be assigned and the county board will either place the person on the Waiting List or supply them with alternative services and supports to meet the need. If no alternative service is available, the person will be placed on the Waiting List for a home and community based services waiver. Once the need has been met by either alternative services or waiver enrollment, their name will no longer be on the waiting list.
What if a person’s needs change and they need something else in the future?
The proposed changes to the Waiting List give people the option to ask for help when they need it and require county boards to follow up with people on the new Waiting List regularly. If their needs change at any time, the person or their guardian may contact their local county board of dd and request the statewide Waiting List Assessment Tool be re-administered.
What happens when a person on the Waiting List moves from one county to another?
The person, or their guardian, will notify the receiving county board of their move and the receiving county board will review the person’s Waiting List Assessment Tool within 90 days to determine if the person has a current need which cannot be met by available resources in the receiving county. If the person continues to meet the qualifications for a current need, the receiving county board will update the person’s county of residence without changing the status date assigned by the previous county board.
Will or can a person be on the Waiting List in multiple counties?
No. The new rule eliminates this concept, as there is one waiting across the State. The local county board where the person resides will be responsible for managing their place on this list.
A person is already on the current Waiting List. How will the new process affect their place in line?
Every person currently on the Waiting List for a HCBS waiver will receive a statewide assessment via the Waiting List Assessment Tool. This assessment will determine if they have a current unmet need that qualifies them to be placed on the Waiting List. Until the person is assessed, their placement on the current Waiting List will not change.
A person’s number on the current Waiting List is constantly changing. Will the new process address this issue?
Yes. In today’s system, a person’s number on the Waiting List may continually change (up and down) due to multiple factors (relocation, status category changes, etc.). The new Waiting List operation creates a more efficient, simplified, and transparent queue based on need.
What will happen during the transition from the old Waiting List to the new Waiting List?
A Transitional List will be established which will include the name and date of request for each person on the current Waiting List as of July 1, 2018. The local county board will administer the Waiting List Assessment Tool to each person in their county whose name is included on the Transitional List no later than December 31, 2020. There are three outcomes for the person as based on the results of the Waiting List Assessment Tool:
When will people be assessed and how long will it take?
Once the new rule is effective, county boards will administer the Waiting List Assessment Tool to each person who is receiving service and support administration on the Transitional List during their next scheduled ISP review. County boards will administer the Waiting List Assessment Tool to each person residing in their county whose name is included on the Transitional List by December 31, 2020. The Waiting List Assessment Tool will be administered as a conversation with the person in order to best understand and address their needs.
What if the person disagrees with their assessment?
Due process will be available to a person who disagrees with the results of the Waiting List Assessment Tool. Due process shall be provided in accordance with section 5160.31 of the Revised Code and Chapters 5101:6-1 to 5101:6-9 of the Administrative Code.
Alternative Services - The various programs, services, and supports, regardless of funding source, other than home and community-based services, that exist as part of the developmental disabilities service system and other service systems.
Current Need - An unmet need for home and community-based services within twelve months, as determined by a county board based upon assessment of the individual using the Waiting List Assessment Tool.
Immediate Need - A situation that creates a risk of substantial harm to an individual, caregiver, or another person if action is not taken within thirty calendar days to mitigate the risk.
Status Date - The date on which the individual is determined to have a current need based on completion of an assessment of the individual using the Waiting List Assessment Tool.
Transitional List - The list which shall include the name and date of request for each person on a list of persons waiting for home and community-based services on the day immediately prior to the effective date of the new rule.
Waiting List Assessment Tool - The instrument developed for purposes of making a determination of an individual's eligibility to be added to the waiting list for home and community-based services.
People with Disabilities and Family Members
County Board Members or Employees