The Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) is the New York State office responsible for coordinating services for people in New York State with developmental disabilities. You must be enrolled in Medicaid and the "Home and Community Based Services Waiver (HCBS) to receive services through OPWDD. You will speak with an Intake Representative at OPWDD who will ask you for basic informaiton about yourself or your family member needing services. You will also be asked to describe the supports that you need and whether or not you are currently working with an agency. If you have spoken to our Intake Coordinator or plan on working with The Arc of Schuyler, you can let OPWDD know at this point. The OPWDD Intake Representative will describe the "Front Door Steps" that meet your situation and will mail you information. If the Intake Reprsentative determines that your eligibility has not been established yet, they will refer you to the Eligibility Team and a member of that team will contact you to guide you through these steps.
Are you eligible through OPWDD to receive supports and services? If you have not contacted the NYS OPWDD about your eligibility, we can assist you. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions about eligibility. Learn more about the eligibility process on the OPWDD website.
To help you prepare for OPWDD services, you will be asked to attend a Front Door Information session. The Front Door is a set of activities and steps to help people with developmental disabilities and their family members learn about and access a variety of services and supports. The Arc of Schuyler and area agencies frequently host Front Door Information Sessions. This information session will cover topics including:
- The types of services and supports available
- How to access supports and services right for you
- How the Front Door process works
Once your eligibility status is determined, we can help you identify the right services for you at The Arc of Schuyler. You will be invited to tour sites and services and meet the staff who will be providing supports to you or your family member. We also work with local schools, ACCESS-VR, the Developmental Disabilities Finger Lakes Regional Office, and other providers to help you develop a plan.
Once your questions have been answered and you have made a decision on the types of services that you are interested in, you are ready to select your Service Coordination provider. Your Service Coordinator will be the person who works in your best interest to help you navigate the system of supports and services, assist you with Medicaid and Waiver enrollments, finding agencies to provide services, help you develop your plan, and make changes to the plan when needed. Selecting a Service Coordinator is a vital step - you will want to do this as soon as possible.
A Front Door Faciliator will conduct an Assessment of Stengths, Needs, and Interests for your preliminary service plan. When your assessment is complete, it will be forwarded to your Service Coordinator. Your Service Coordinator will meet with you to go over the plan and identify agencies that deliver the supports and services you have selected to receive. The Service Coordinator and the agencies you select will submit the required forms for service authorization. Once this is done and your Medicaid and Waiver enrollments are processed, you can enroll in and start your services.
We look forward to assisting you and your family in creating the right path for you. If you would like to learn more about supports and services available at The Arc of Schuyler, please browse our website.