COVID-19 DSP Training Flexibilities Part 2

Illinois Department of Human Services

Division of Developmental Disabilities

Information Bulletin



The Division recognizes that COVID-19 has had a significant impact on provider operations over the course of the pandemic. In particular, it has exacerbated the nationwide staffing crisis impacting providers, which is leading not only to provider fatigue and stress but also reduced capacity, closures and consolidations. Through flexibilities provided under Appendix K, the Division will be allowing the following through the end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2022). These changes coincide with changes already allowed under UPDATED - V.2.1 - COVID-19 DSP Training (DD.20.023 FINAL). Providers should also review the Staffing Crisis Flexibilities Q & A for additional ideas and/or support.

Changes to eligibility for DSPs:

  • Providers shall prioritize First Aid / CPR training for all DSPs, however, DSPs are permitted to work without First Aid / CPR certification as long as there is at least one other First Aid / CPR certified staff member working within the immediate work area or home at the same time.
  • Staff can be shared between agencies. The hiring agency can contact the potential staff member's current agency to confirm the necessary background checks and fingerprints have been completed. This should be documented by interagency emails. Please cc The hiring agency must check the Healthcare Worker Registry to confirm the potential staff member is listed.

Changes to DSP Training:

  • The Direct Support Person (DSP) Training can be completed in up to 240 days, as opposed to 120 days.
  • The agency should submit the 120-day waiver for all DSPs going through the extended DSP training period (240 days). The completed form should be sent to Reimbursement for training will be given after completion of the standard DSP curriculum training.
  • On-The-Job Training (OJT) should still be completed as they are applicable to the required module / section intervention competencies. This information is listed in the Interventional Competencies Table of Contents on pages 5-6 of the DHS Direct Support Person Training Program.
  • OJT supervision can be provided using a remote video process (FaceTime, Zoom, Skype, etc.). It should be documented on the OJT competencies that it was reviewed remotely.
  • Abuse & Neglect and Individualized training on de-escalation and prevention methods should not be delayed and must be based on the needs of the individuals served by the DSP.

Effective Date:


The information contained herein should not be considered a substitute for the appropriate official statutes, rules, regulations, or the advice of legal counsel.