Life Choices Project - What's This All About?

If you need any of this information in an accessible format, please contact Pamela.S.Baker@illinois.gov.

What's This All About?

Governor Quinn indicated his desire to increase opportunities for community options and improve quality of life for all individuals with developmental disabilities. It is our desire to align all of the major steps in our system so that people with developmental disabilities and their family members experience a smooth and easy to understand process for entering and accessing services. The Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) recognizes the need to grow our community's capacity to provide supports; people are transitioning from State Operated Developmental Centers (SODCs) and Intermediate Care Facilities/Developmental Disability (ICF/DD) settings, and the ability to serve everyone well requires efficiency in all parts of the system. This initiative will streamline practices and create consistency in developmental disability system processes across the state.

Why Are We Discussing This Now?

  1. People who need supports and/or services, and their families, need up to date and accurate information about their role and their decisions related to choice of services.
  2. Consistency with the federal Balancing Incentive Program and CMS requirements that service plans be person-centered and conflict-free.
  3. 3000 people need to be supported, as required by the Ligas Settlement, by June 2016 - and this requires improvements in eligibility determination, identification of services needed, and access to services.
  4. 900 individuals transitioning from ICF/DD settings by June 2016.
  5. Ligas Settlement requirements for Transition Plans, meaningful Prioritization of the Urgent Needs for Services (PUNS) system and timely eligibility determinations.

What is the desired outcome for this effort?

For all individuals with DD in Illinois to:

  1. be healthy and safe
  2. have real relationships with family and friends
  3. have a paying job if they want to work
  4. make decisions about their lives
  5. have opportunities to contribute to their community

What is involved?

  1. Eligibility determination process - streamlined and simplified. Eligibility for developmental disability services will be determined directly after intake is complete.
  2. PUNS is being updated through the input received from listening sessions around the state.
  3. Medicaid HCBS Waiver eligibility will be completed within the timeframe of HCBS service initiation.
  4. Profile and Desired Outcomes Plan will be developed with the person, their PAS/ISSA and family members.
  5. People will use their Profile and Desired Outcomes Plan to select service providers.
  6. ISSA will monitor services to assure their delivery is consistent with what is in the person's Profile and Desired Outcomes Plan.
  7. Providers will continue to write the Individual Support Plan (ISP) demonstrating how they will deliver the services they are authorized to deliver.

What is Next?

  1. Form teams among PAS/ISC/ISSA agencies, service providers, self advocates, family representatives, DDD staff, and other stakeholders to develop the details of how each new process will occur.
  2. Identify resources and funding support.
  3. Revise policy manuals to reflect the changes.
  4. Train all ISSAs on the new process.
  5. Inform service provider agencies of the details of the new processes.