Eligibility and Contact Information
The Office of Developmental Programs is the entity within the Department of Human Services responsible for the oversight of intellectual and developmental disability services in Pennsylvania. The local County MH/ID Programs' role is to verify eligibility for intellectual disability services through the Office of Developmental Programs.
Eligibility for intellectual disability services through the Office of Developmental Programs requires a diagnosis of an intellectual disability based on the results of objective standardized testing. An intellectual disability is a permanent condition that affects a person's ability to learn and function in daily life that occurs during the developmental period. A diagnosis of an intellectual disability requires that both a person's general intelligence and ability to function in daily life are significantly below average. These two conditions may be present at birth or occur in the developmental period defined as prior to the person's 22nd birthday.
Persons interested in more information regarding eligibility for intellectual services may contact the Office of Developmental Programs by telephoning the Intellectual Disabilities Services Customer Service Line at 1-888-565-9435 or by contacting their local County Mental Health/Intellectual Disabilities (MH/ID) Program Office.
The Mental Health and Mental Retardation Act of 1966 (50 P.S. SS 4101 - 4704)
Where Do I Begin?
If you are not registered with the County Office of Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities (MH/ID), you need to call the office and make an appointment to register for supports or services.
Take documents to the appointment that will help establish that you are eligible for services through the intellectual disabilities system. Some examples are medical, psychological and school records. The County Office of Intellectual Disabilities will then determine if you are eligible for services.
If you are found eligible to receive services and are requesting services now or in the future, you will receive supports coordination. You should have a choice of any available Supports Coordinators and you should be able to meet with them before making your choice. If you do not wish to choose your Supports Coordinator, the county can assign one to you.
What Happens Next?
Your Supports Coordinator will:
- Talk with you about what kinds of supports and services would be helpful to you
- Offer you an opportunity to complete an application for the Medicaid Home and Community Based Waiver Program.
- If sufficient funding and capacity for services is available, your Supports Coordinator will:
- Enroll you in services which will require completing additional applications
- Help you develop your individual plan
- Help you talk with individuals or agencies in the community that could support you
- Coordinate and monitor supports and services
- If sufficient funding and capacity for services is not available, your Supports Coordinator will:
- Offer you the opportunity to complete a Prioritization of Urgency of Need for Services (PUNS) form and place you on the waiting list.
- Help to identify other types of community supports and services that would help you while you are waiting.
If I'm Having Problems, Who Do I Contact?
After a while, if you find the relationship between you and your Supports Coordinator isn't working, you should be able to choose another Supports Coordinator. In order to do this, you will need to talk with the Supports Coordination Organization (SCO).
When you are having other problems, first you need to contact your Supports Coordinator. If that doesn't work, then you contact the Supports Coordination Organization (SCO).
If your problem is not resolved, contact the County MH/ID Administrator.
If your problem still is not resolved, contact the Regional Program Manager of the Office of Developmental Programs. The phone numbers are as follows:
- Northeast Regional Office, 570-963-4749
- Southeast Regional Office, 215-560-2245
- Central Regional Office, 717-772-6507
- Western Regional Office, 412-565-5144
If you still need assistance after going through the county and regional offices, contact the Department of Human Services, Office of Developmental Programs.
- Telephone number: 717-787-3700
- Toll Free telephone number: 1-888-565-9435
- Toll Free telephone number for Hearing Impaired (only): 1-866-388-1114
To resolve disputes, it is your right to use fair hearing and due process available through the Department of Human Services Hearings and Appeals. You can get forms to make an appeal from your Supports Coordinator.
What Should I Know About Fair Hearing and Appeals - Mediation is a way to resolve disputes between you and the County Intellectual Disabilities Services concerning the identification, evaluation or the provision of appropriate waiver services or supports.