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Self-Determination Program - Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the Self-Determination Program?
  2. When does the SDP start?
  3. How can I keep updated on the progress of the SDP?
  4. Who is eligible for the SDP?
  5. What if participants are happy with their current service delivery program and do not wish to enroll in the SDP?
  6. How much responsibility will participants or their family have if they choose to participate in the SDP?
  7. What are Financial Management Services?
  8. What is an individual budget?
  9. How does the individual budget amount get determined? Updated Information
  10. How does the individual budget amount get determined for an individual, who is either new to the regional center, or does not have a 12-month history of POS costs? New Information
  11. Are there restrictions on what the individual budget can be used for?
  12. If I choose to participate in the SDP, will I still have the same rights? New Information
  13. How can someone learn more about the SDP?
  14. This sounds great; can I enroll in Self-Determination now?

Q1. What is the Self-Determination Program?

A. As authorized in Welfare and Institutions Code, Section 4685.8, "the Self-Determination Program (SDP) is a voluntary delivery system consisting of a mix of services and supports, selected and directed by a participant through person-centered planning, in order to meet the objectives in his or her Individual Program Plan (IPP). Self-determination services and supports are designed to assist the participant to achieve personally defined outcomes in community settings that promote inclusion."

Q2. When does the SDP start?

A. The program will start once it is approved for federal funding. The Department is working with stakeholders to draft a Home and Community-Based Services Waiver application that will be submitted for approval to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services no later than December 31, 2014. Upon approval of the Waiver application, the SDP will be implemented for up to 2,500 participants during the first three years. After this three year phase-in period, the program will be available to all consumers.

Q3. How can I keep updated on the progress of the SDP?

A. Updates will be posted as they become available on the Self-Determination website. If you want to be notified when updates are made, email sdp@dds.ca.gov and ask to be included on the update notification list.

Q4. Who is eligible for the SDP?

A. An individual must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Has a developmental disability and currently receives services from a regional center or is a new consumer of a regional center;
  • Agrees to specific terms and conditions, which include but are not limited to, participation in an orientation to SDP, working with a Financial Management Services entity, and managing SDP services within an individual budget amount.
  • An individual who lives in a licensed long-term health care facility (i.e., a Skilled Nursing Facility, Intermediate Care Facility) is not eligible to participate in the SDP. If someone lives in one of these facilities and is interested in the SDP, he or she can request that the regional center provide person-centered planning services in order to make arrangements for transition to the SDP, provided that he or she is reasonably expected to transition to the community within 90 days.

Q5. What if participants are happy with their current service delivery program and do not wish to enroll in the SDP?

A. Enrollment in the SDP is completely voluntary. Just like any other program offered under the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act in California, an individual chooses what is best for him or her. An individual may choose to participate in, and may choose to leave, the SDP at any time.

Q6. How much responsibility will participants or their family have if they choose to participate in the SDP?

A. The participant will need to develop a person-centered plan and select individuals or members from their planning team to help implement the plan. The participant will also need to choose a Financial Management Services entity that will work with him or her to monitor their individual budget.

Q7. What are Financial Management Services?

A. Financial Management Services assist the participant to manage and direct the funds contained in the individual budget, and ensure that the participant can implement his or her IPP throughout the year. Financial Management Services may include bill paying services and activities that facilitate the hiring of support workers for the participant.

Q8. What is an individual budget?

A. It is the amount of money a SDP participant has available to purchase needed services and supports.

Q9. How does the individual budget amount get determined? Updated Information

A. The individual budget is determined by the IPP team, and is based upon the amount of purchase of service (POS) funds used by the individual in the most recent 12-months. This amount can be adjusted, up or down, if the IPP team determines that the individual's needs, circumstances, or resources has changed. Additionally, the IPP team may adjust the budget to support any prior needs or resources that were not addressed in the IPP.

Q10. How does the individual budget amount get determined for an individual, who is either new to the regional center, or does not have a 12-month history of POS costs? New Information

A. For these individuals, the individual budget amount is determined by the IPP team, and is based upon the average POS cost of services and supports, paid by the regional center, that are identified in the individual's IPP. The average cost may be adjusted, up or down, by the regional center, if needed to meet the individual's unique needs.

Q11. Are there restrictions on what the individual budget can be used for?

A. Yes, a participant can only purchase services and supports as described in the SDP Waiver and in the IPP. Services funded through other sources (e.g., Medi-Cal, schools) cannot be purchased with SDP funds.

Q12. If I choose to participate in the SDP, will I still have the same rights? New Information

A. Yes, participants enrolled in the SDP will have the same rights established under the traditional service model (e.g. appeals, eligibility determinations, all rights associated with the IPP process).

Q13. How can someone learn more about the SDP?

A. Interested participants, families, or others are encouraged to visit the Self-Determination website (www.dds.ca.gov/sdp) to find out more information about SDP. The site will be updated as more information is available.

Q14. This sounds great; can I enroll in Self-Determination now?

A. The process for selecting and enrolling the 2,500 participants in the first three years has not been finalized. However, you can email sdp@dds.ca.gov to express your interest in the program and you'll receive notice of website updates on the progress of the SDP, including the enrollment process. Please include your name and/or the name of the person interested in enrollment and the regional center you are with in the email.

 
 
Last Updated: 7/3/2014