As a Placement Coordinator for D&S Community Services, I am often called by parents, guardians and caregivers who simply need help figuring out where to start. They are looking for a group home, foster care/family model home, or in-home support for their loved one with an intellectual and/or developmental disability. They know they need the help, or should at least start thinking about it, but have no idea how to get started. I often explain to parents that even if your loved one or family member does not need help now, there are steps you need to take now to ensure they will be taken care of in the future. D&S Community Services offers a full-range of in-home and community-based services and supports to individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD), including group homes, in Texas, Tennessee, and Kentucky. The following is a basic summary of what your first steps should be to secure this type of service for your loved one.
Your first step is to get onto the DADS HCS Waiver Interest List. The Home and Community Based (HCS) program provides individualized services and supports to persons with intellectual disabilities who are living with their family, in their own home or in other community settings, such as small group homes. Here’s how to get started: Find the Local Authority for your county of residence by clicking here (look at “Counties Served” to figure out which one to call). Call your Local Authority to put your family member’s name on the HCS Interest List – currently the wait list for services is over 10 years, so call now! If you need a group home immediately, go ahead and schedule an “Intake” appointment while you are on the phone. In Texas, D&S Community Services is not only a provider of many HCS services, but we also have group homes that are available immediately called Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) group homes. You can live in this type of group home while your name is on the HCS interest list, as long as you have a qualifying condition and are Medicaid eligible. To find out more, contact us here.
Your first step is getting on the DIDD Waiver Waiting List. The Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (DIDD) is a state government agency that has the responsibility to provide quality health and supportive services to Tennessee residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Here’s how to start: Contact the DIDD Regional Office in the area where you or your family member lives. Click here to find that office and contact number. After contacting the Regional Office, an intake process will start. If your family member is added to the DIDD Waiver Waiting List, a Case Manager will be assigned and a home visit will be scheduled. To find out more, contact us here.
In Kentucky, there are two Waiver programs – the Michelle P Waiver and the Supports for Community Living (SCL) Program. Your first step is to contact your Local Community Mental Health Provider. They will help you determine which waiver wait list to go on based off of your needs. Click here to find that office and contact number. After contacting your local office, an assessment will be scheduled and performed. Once approved, you will receive a letter of approval and will have 60 days to find a provider, such as D&S Community Services, to provide services. To find out more regarding services and programs in Kentucky, click here.