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Medina County Board of Developmental Disabilities



News > DD System Changes Info

DD System Changes Info


Get the most up-to-date information about changes in Ohio's developmental disabilities system.

The field of developmental disabilities in Ohio is entering a time of historic change. These new directions will have a significant impact on how people with DD receive services and supports in our state and our county. The current changes facing DD systems throughout Ohio will eventually become some of the biggest milestones in the history of our field. Click here for an overview chart of the issues driving the Ohio DD system changes.

So what are these changes and where are they coming from? How will they affect your services? How will you know what to do? We know that with any changes, large or small, there will be many questions, concerns and sometimes fear. Know that we will be here to make sure you have the information you need to navigate these changes.

If you have specific concerns or questions about this information, please click here to contact us.


There are many factors driving the upcoming changes in the developmental disabilities field.
Here is an overview of the federal and state mandates which are becoming
the new foundation for services for people with disabilities.


Olmstead Decision
This decision declared that people with developmental disabilities have the right to receive services in the community, in the most integrated settings appropriate for their needs. Many believed the Olmstead decision applied only to residential services so states, including Ohio, stepped up deinstitutionalization. More recently, under federal pressures, the principles of Olmstead are being applied to day programs such as sheltered workshops.

Olmstead Decision Website


The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Americans with Disabilities Act provides a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities. It provides clear, strong, consistent, enforceable standards to address discrimination. ADA strives to remove barriers and to promote full and complete community access and inclusion.

ADA Website


Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ensures that all children with disabilities have available to them a free appropriate public education that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment and independent living. IDEA strives for the inclusion of all children in public school settings.

IDEA Website


Centers of Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS)
Centers of Medicaid and Medicare Services has issued new rules that define home and community-based services. These new rules for Medicaid waivers require that services and supports funded through waivers must be provided in “community-based” settings.

CMS Website

Ohio's CMS Transition Plan information - draft of Ohio's plan to come into compliance with CMS rules


U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)
United States Department of Justice oversees states’ compliance with Olmstead and ADA. They define what is necessary to be considered in compliance with these federal laws. They have stated that public entities, such as County Boards of DD, cannot directly or indirectly use federal funds to operate, fund, or promote through the planning process any facilities and/or programs that segregate individuals with disabilities.

They have stated that service delivery must:

  • be home/community based
  • provide opportunity to work and live in integrated settings
  • allow an individual to engage in community life
  • allow an individual to control their own personal resources
  • allow an individual’s choices of services and who provides them and where
  • be put in place using person centered planning
  • maintain conflict free case management for all individuals

United States Department of Justice Website



Disability Rights Ohio (DRO)
Disability Rights Ohio is an advocacy group for human, civil and legal rights for people with disabilities. They have expressed concerns to state officials that parts of Ohio’s service delivery system for people with developmental disabilities are not in compliance with the Olmstead Decision.

DRO Website

DRO Lawsuit Against State of Ohio

OACBDD Response to DRO Lawsuit
DODD Director Martin Response to DRO Lawsuit

DRO Overview Powerpoint Presentation

DRO Letter to Ohio State Officials - letter to Ohio state officials regarding DD system

DODD Director Martin Response to DRO Letter

DRO Response to DODD Letter

DRO Response to Ohio's CMS Transition Plan


Employment First
This initiative focuses on transforming services for adults with disabilities from segregated to integrated settings, with community employment as the preferred option.

Employment First Website


Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD)
DODD’s goal is to help Ohio’s citizens with developmental disabilities to live and work as integrated members of the community. They oversee the service delivery system in Ohio.

Issues Driving Change - chart of the issues driving the Ohio DD system changes

State of Ohio Transition Plan - new regulations to ensure that individuals receiving services and supports through Medicaid HCBS programs are assured full access to community living

Overview of the Home and Community-Based Settings Regulation - Ohio's plan is to maximize opportunities for individuals receiving HCBS services to have access to the benefits of community living.


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