A = Aide & Habilitation Aide

Helping Families. Supporting Communities. Empowering Individuals.

Please see qualifications needed to be a Habilitation Aides and Developmental Disabilities Aide  on the DHS web site.

Habilitation Aides and Developmental Disabilities Aides working in community residential and day program settings must successfully complete a Department approved Direct Support Person (DSP)Training Program within 120 calendar days from date hire and not completed in less than 21 calendar days from when it starts.

Each program shall include a minimum of 40 hours of classroom instruction and 80 hours of on-the-job (OJT) training, excluding breaks, lunch, and any orientation to the specific policies of the employing agency in an approved and current (not expired) program for the individual's ENTIRE training period.  Please see required DSP classroom and OJT training on the DHS web site. 

Respite workers, job coaches, secretaries, and other support staff are exempt from this DSP Training requirement.  Other staff such as Qualified Support Professionals and Executive Directors, that spend 20% or more of their time in a direct care role must complete the DSP Training Program. 

To Be Eligible for Payment Consideration

Please review the following important information:

  • Illinois Criminal Background Check Application Guidelines, advises providers to ensure that individuals are added to the Illinois Department of Public Health's Health Care Worker Registry (HCWR) in a timely manner. 
  • Electronic Fingerprint Background Checks and Public Act 096-0632 - Memorandum from Lilia Teninty, Director, Division of Developmental Disabilities.
  • Public Act 096-0632 - Regarding changes affecting residential and day program providers.  An agency must obtain an Illinois State Police electronic fingerprint background check result from the live scan vendor serving their area.  The Health Care Worker Background Check Act and rules require all health care employers and CNA training programs governed by this Act to have access to the web-based Health Care Worker Registry (HCWR) which can be accessed via the IDPH Web Portal.

    Agencies covered by this Act should designate one person as a Portal Registration Authority (PRA) to act as a liaison with the IDPH's Information Technology Security for the purpose of managing portal accounts and application security role assignments.  The PRA must register for a portal account to access the IDPH Health Alert Network through the online registration process.

    If the fingerprint background check process is not yet available in your area, agencies must continue to obtain an Illinois State Police name-based Criminal Background Check.  The person's social security number (SSN) must be written on the result and reported to the Health Care Worker Registry on or before the first day of DSP training class.  Electronic fingerprint background check results are automatically reported to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).

    Important: Your agency is responsible for checking the HCWR to verify that the background check results were received and posted to the HCWR.  If the results are not posted within three to four weeks of submittal, it is the agency's responsibility to contact the HCWR to determine what needs to be done to get the background check result posted.  Verifications can be made to the HCWR by phone, mail, or Internet web site by using the contact information listed below.

    Illinois Department of Public Health
    Health Care Worker Registry
    535 West Jefferson Street, 4th floor
    Springfield, Illinois 62761
    Phone: (217) 785-5133
    TTY: (800) 547-0466

    DSP Registry packets must be accurately completed and postmarked within 30 days of the program completion date.  Complete information about this process is in the DSP Illinois HCWR Registry Packet Instruction Manual. The training completion date is listed on the front page of the Direct Support Person Training Program Core Competency Area Checklist.  Any DSP Registry packets that are postmarked beyond 30 days following completion of DSP training WILL NOT be processed and Southern Illinois University's Registration Services will return these packets to your agency.

    If this occurs, please contact DDD at (217) 782-9438 or email  DHS.BQM@illinois.gov.  You will be sent a summary form to complete. Once reviewed and approved by DDD, you will be given clearance to resubmit a packet to SIU.  DSP Registry packets that are incomplete or contain errors will be returned for corrections delaying any processing.

    Important: It is critical to ensure that the employee's name and SSN on the background check are exactly the same as employee's name and SSN on the Direct Support Persons (DSP) Training Roster Form and the Illinois Health Care Workers Application Scan Form submitted to SIU. This will result in the designation of "DD Aide" being displayed on the person's entry under "Programs."  Program codes 6000-6666 indicate that the individual is an approved Developmental Disability Aide/DSP.  Example of HCWR record (pdf)

  • Training program information must be verified on the HCWR with correct SSN, name, training end date and approved training site as reported on your Staff Training Reimbursement Request.  (Example of HCWR record (pdf)) Please do not submit for reimbursement before the training program can be verified with the designation of "DD Aide" displayed on the individual's entry under "Programs".  Possible reimbursement will be delayed if the individual is not verifiable when the Staff Training Reimbursement Request is processed.
  • DDD stresses the importance of verifying the program information before submitting the Staff Training Reimbursement Request, as you may have to resubmit the Staff Training Reimbursement Request if this information does not match exactly to that on the HCWR.

    Important: DSPs must have the designation "DD Aide" on the HCWR BEFORE they can work alone with people with developmental disabilities without a qualified person supervising their direct support activities.

  • DDD does not reimburse staff training reimbursement requests for individuals in advance.  The Staff Training Reimbursement Request, either initial submission or resubmission, can be processed if received over the 12-month time frame, and for those Staff Training Reimbursement Requests received after the lapse time period following the end of the fiscal year with training end dates of July 1, 2009 and after. This alleviates community providers submitting billings through the Court of Claims. DDD is able to continue this process, as long as no changes are made to the language of the State Finance Act (30 ILCS 105/1) and the Department's appropriation that allows for this practice.
  • DDD will verify the number of hours approved for provider's DSP curriculum, and will only reimburse up to that number of hours, not to exceed 130 hours.  DDD is collecting this data with each provider's two-year DSP curriculum renewal at this time.

    If your DSP curriculum has not been renewed since this began, the Department's maximum up to 130 hours will still apply until your hours are collected.  IDPH approves the Nursing Assistant/Aide curriculum, but any additional hours to train a Nursing Assistant/Aide to become a DSP Person must be approved by DDD and you will be reimbursed up to that number of hours, not to exceed 130 hours.

  • An individual must satisfactorily complete an approved DSP training program at an approved training site by an approved instructor.  The training program must be an approved and current (not expired) training program for the individual's ENITRE training period. DDD will verify that these requirements are met before possible reimbursement can occur. DSPs must successfully complete an approved DSP training program within 120 calendar days from date of hire and not be completed in less than 21 calendar days from when it starts.

    Exception: When the classroom portion of the approved training program is conducted by a community college or other educational institution, in which case the training program must be completed by the end of the term, semester, or trimester in which the individual began the community college or other educational institution training program.  In these instances, the end date is tied to the end of the term, semester or trimester.  Please indicate on the billing form if the classroom training is conducted by a community college or other educational institution.

    Important: The billing agency will not be reimbursed for an individual whose training was not completed in accordance with prescribed time frame of 120 calendar days from date of hire and not completed in less than 21 calendar days from when it starts.

    An approved and current (not expired) DSP training program must be in place covering the ENTIRE training period before the Department can authorize reimbursement to agencies for DSP training expenses.

    Your agency will be given a rejection code and referred to DDD at (217) 782-9438 or email at DHS.BQM@illinois.gov for further instruction how to request an exception to these time frames due to specific circumstances occurring in your agency.

    If an exception is approved by DDD, you may resubmit for possible reimbursement.  You must include a copy of your 120-day exception letter, an original Staff Training Reimbursement Request, with an original signature, with resubmittal indicated at the top of the billing.

    If you know, prior to your submission, that a 120-day exception letter is needed, do not submit the Staff Training Reimbursement Request until you can include the Staff Training Reimbursement Request with the 120-day exception letter; otherwise, a rejection will be given, delaying possible reimbursement.

  • As part of the In-Home Support Waiver for Children and Young Adults with Developmental Disabilities, providers for Home-Based Supports to eligible children and young adults must train their staff using an approved DSP training curriculum are now eligible for reimbursement. There is still no reimbursement for staff in Child Group Homes who have to meet the Department of Children and Family Services staff training requirements.
  • The Staff Training Reimbursement Request must have an original authorized signature and be submitted for possible reimbursement consideration from the employing agency.  The employing agency must sign and submit the Staff Training Reimbursement Request when training is successfully completed.

    If your agency is approved to train elsewhere for the classroom portion of training, the OJT training must be completed at the employing agency. The DDD will verify that the billing agency has an approved program, approved training site and an approved instructor.  It is the employing agencies responsibility to verify that the train out agency also has an approved training program, approved training site and an approved instructor.  Both training programs must be current and Department approved for the individual's ENTIRE training period. 

  • DSPs hired prior to April 1, 2000, could become qualified through an alternative, competency-based training method for a Department maximum of 49 hours.  No reimbursement is available for this "DC" training type effective November 1, 2001.
  • If the TABE is used to verify 8th grade equivalence then indicate which version with "S" for Survey, "C" for Complete Battery, "OA" for Adult Basic Learning Examination (ABLE) or "OC" for CASAS Adult Life Skills Reading Test. If another test is used and it has been DHS-approved, enter the code "O" for Other in the "TABE TYPE" column and indicate the test name on the billing form. Please leave blank or indicate "NA" if not administered.  The TABE or other Department approved test is only available once per individual per corporation.  Please do not indicate a TABE or other Department approved test for medication administration if indicating the test was administered with the "A" type of training.

    Important:
    TABE is reimbursed one time per corporation.