What Programs Are Available To Assist People With Disabilities in Maryland?

Is there a Medicaid waiver program in Maryland? Maryland has several waivers including:

  • MD Model Waiver for Fragile Children
  • MD New Directions Independence Plus
  • MD Community Pathways
  • MD Waivers for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • MD Living at Home
  • MD Older Adults
  • MD Medical Day Care Services
  • MD TBI

What programs assist people who have developmental disabilities in Maryland? Maryland has several Medicaid waiver programs to help persons with developmental disabilities. These waivers include: MD New Directions Independence Plus; MD Community Pathways; and MD Waivers for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

What state department handles the Medicaid waiver program in Maryland? The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) handles the Medicaid waiver program for persons with disabilities in Maryland. The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) is a branch of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

What is the best number to call to get started with the Maryland Medicaid Waiver Program? Call (877) 463-3464 if you live in Maryland. If outside of Maryland, call (410) 767-5600 which is the main office. There are also four branch offices. Branch office numbers include: (410) 234-8200; (410) 572-5920; (301) 362-5100; and 301) 791-4670.

Is there a website for the Maryland waiver program? http://dda.dhmh.maryland.gov

Who Qualifies For Assistance?

Who is Eligible for the Medicaid Waiver Program in Maryland? Eligibility is based on definitions found in Maryland State law- Health-General Article, Title 7, Developmental Disabilities Law. Services are not an entitlement. Individuals must be Maryland residents to apply and be determined eligible for DDA services. Two groups of individuals are eligible for services. 1. Those with developmental disabilities and; 2. Those who have a severe, chronic disability which is caused by a physical or mental condition, other than a sole diagnosis of mental illness.

What is considered a developmental disability in Maryland? An individual is considered to have a developmental disability if she/he has a physical or mental condition other than a sole diagnosis of mental illness and needs to have services which are individually planned and coordinated. The condition has to be likely to continue indefinitely and has to be manifested before the age of 22, with the result of the condition being an inability to live independently.

An individual who does not meet the definition of developmentally disabled may be eligible for Individual Support Services. One must have a severe, chronic disability, which is caused by a physical or mental condition other than a sole diagnosis of mental illness, and the condition has to be likely to continue indefinitely.

Are there income limits to receive services in Maryland? In Maryland you must be financially eligible based on income and assets.

How old do you have to be to start receiving waiver services in Maryland? Age requirements vary based on the waiver you apply for in Maryland. Community Pathways provides services and supports to individuals, of any age, living in the community through provider agencies that are funded by DDA. New Directions provides individuals, of any age, the opportunity to self-direct their services and supports in their own home or their family’s home. All individuals must meet the criteria for a developmental disability per the Annotated Code of Maryland Title VII. Maryland’s Home and Community-Based Services Waiver for Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury provides services to individuals that must have experienced the (initial) traumatic brain injury after the age of 17. The Autism Waiver is targeted to children ages 1 through the end of the school year that the child turns 21. The Waiver for Older Adults is a statewide program for adults 50 and older that meet nursing facility level of care, but wish to receive their long term services and supports in their own home or assisted living, rather than a nursing facility. The Living at Home Waiver Program is a statewide program for people with physical disabilities, who are between the ages of 18 to 64, and need assistance with daily living.

Is There a Waiting List For Services?

How long is the waiting list in Maryland? You can expect to wait many years before receiving Medicaid waiver services in Maryland. There are nearly twice as many people waiting for services as those receiving services.

How many people are currently receiving services in Maryland?

  • New Directions Waiver 268
  • Model Waiver For Disabled Children 197
  • Waiver for Children with Autism 876
  • Waiver for Older adults 3,365
  • Waiver for Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury 52

How many people are on the waiting list in Maryland?

  • Living at Home Waiver 3,500
  • Waiver for Children with Autism 3800
  • Waiver for Older Adults 21,800

What assistance is available while you wait in Maryland? The DDA Regional Office staff or a resource coordinator may assist by providing referrals to other federal, state, and local programs and supports. DDA also offers Low Intensity Support Services (LISS).

Is there priority preference for people who are in crisis in Maryland? Yes. When the application process is complete, the applicant will receive a letter indicating their priority category. Placement in a priority group does not guarantee funding will be available. First served are people in the Crisis Resolution category. Second are people in the Crisis Prevention category. Third are people in the Current Request category.

What Services Are Offered & What Are The Service Limitations?

What services does the Medicaid waiver program offer in Maryland? Residential, Day Support Services, Behavioral Support Support Services, Family Support Services, Individual Support Services, Respite Care,Resource Coordination, and Supported Employment are offered in Maryland.

What services are available to people living in the family home in Maryland? Day support services include: day habilitation, supported employment, community learning service, and employment discovery and customization.

Does Maryland offer community group homes? Residential support services in Maryland include: Alternative Living Unites (ALU), Group Homes, Individual Family Care (IFC), and Community Supported Living Arrangement (CSLA.)

Does Maryland offer supported living? Maryland offers support for persons living in their own homes. Individual Family Services are support services for adults living with their families or on their own. Included are respite services, transportation, environmental modifications, adaptive equipment, money management and home skills.

Are there still state owned institutions? How many people are living in institutions? Maryland has three large state Residential Centers housing 140 Americans.

  • Holly Center -Staff provide residential care, treatment and supports. Services provided include twenty-four hour residential care and support.
    (410) 572-6200
  • Potomac Center -Provides
    Staff provide therapeutic interventions in support of people with intellectual disabilities. In 2009, the Potomac Center, in a cooperative effort with the Mental Health Administration and the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration, opened the Transitions Program. The program provides a therapeutic environment in which men and women with mental illness and intellectual disabilities, and at times substance abuse concerns, receive active treatment appropriate for their strengths and needs as well as goals and wishes.
    (240) 313-3500
  • The SETT Unit - Secure Evaluation and Therapeutic Treatment Program- People with intellectual disabilities may be arrested and charged with various crimes. Many of these people are committed to the Department of Health & Mental Hygiene (DHMH) for evaluation and/or for care and treatment.
    (301) 362-5123

How Do You Select A Provider?

Do providers work for the state? No, providers in Maryland work for privately owned agencies.

About how many providers are there in Maryland? There are about 75 provider agencies in Maryland.

Do you have a choice in providers in Maryland? Yes, you choose your own provider. People with developmental disabilities direct their lives; have viable support options; and, have information to make decisions.

How Do You Become A Provider?

To become a licensed provider for adults (age 21 and over) with developmental disabilities, contact the Office of Health Care Quality (OHCQ) at 410-402-8100 or toll-free at 1-877-402-8220.

Additional Information

Individuals receiving funding from the DDA can request a change (i.e. increase, decrease, addition or deletion) in services at any time.

MD Providers

Maryland Providers

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Chimes International 410-358-6400
Serving Delaware, Maryland, & Virginia
We offer a range of educational services, residential supports, day and vocational training, supported employment and competitive employment opportunities.


Ardmore Enterprises (301) 577-2575
Serving Maryland
Provides job development, placement, career development, counseling, supervision, training, & support.


Karina Association Inc. (443) 928-0542
Serving Maryland - Adults and Children! (Services/Fees)
Provides Expressive Arts Therapy & Respite to Special Needs Kids & Adults. ( Art, Music, Psychodrama & Dance)


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