What Programs Are Available To Assist People With Disabilities in North Carolina?

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

  • Comprehensive Waiver
  • Supports Waiver
  • CAP Choice - IP
  • CAP / DA
  • Community Alternatives Program (CAP) for Children
  • Innovations Waiver (Replaces the CAP MR-DD Waiver in 2013)

What state department handles the Medicaid waiver program in North Carolina? Persons with developmental disabilities are served by the "Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services" within the Department of Health and Human Services.

What programs assist people who have developmental disabilities in North Carolina? The Innovations Waiver is the largest waiver program for persons with disabilities in North Carolina. The Family Infant Toddler Program is early intervention services to help families who have concerns about the development of their young children (birth to three). Mi Via, which means “my path,” “my way” or “my road,” is designed for participants who have disabilities to manage their own services and supports. There are also some smaller waivers and pilot programs.

What is the best number to call to get started? The DMH/DD/SAS is adding an in-state, toll-free number to its current customer service and community rights call center. The number is (855) 262-1946 and is only operational within North Carolina. The new number will work with the current number (919) 715-3197.

Is there a website? http://www.ncdhhs.gov/mhddsas/

Who Qualifies For Assistance?

What is considered a developmental disability in North Carolina? (12a) "Developmental disability" means a severe, chronic disability of a person which: a. Is attributable to a mental or physical impairment or combination of mental and physical impairments; b. Is manifested before the person attains age 22, unless the disability is caused by a traumatic head injury and is manifested after age 22; c. Is likely to continue indefinitely; d. Results in substantial functional limitations in three or ore of the following areas of major life activity: self-care, receptive and expressive language, capacity for independent living, learning, mobility, self-direction and economic self-sufficiency; and e. Reflects the person's need for a combination and sequence of special interdisciplinary, or generic care, treatment, or other services which are of a lifelong or extended duration and are individually planned and coordinated; or f. When applied to children from birth through four years of age, may be evidenced as a developmental delay. (22) "Mental retardation" means significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested before age 22. (23) "Mentally retarded with accompanying behavior disorder" means an individual who is mentally retarded and who has a pattern of maladaptive behavior that is recognizable no later than adolescence and is characterized by gross outbursts of rage or physical aggression against other individuals or property.

Are there income limits to receive services in North Carolina? These waivers are intended for low income families and as such, persons must meet the eligibility requirements for North Carolina Medicaid.

How old do you have to be to start receiving services in North Carolina? Services are available to people of all ages.

Is There a Waiting List For Services?

How long is the waiting list for waiver services in North Carolina? You can expect to wait 7-10 years to get services from the NC Innovations Waiver.

How many people are on the Medicaid waiver waiting list in North Carolina? There are over 9,000 people waiting for Medicaid waiver services in North Carolina.

How many people are currently receiving waiver services in North Carolina? There are over 12,000 people currently receiving waiver services in North Carolina.

What assistance is available while you wait? State General Funded Services are offered to individuals who meet the State's Definition of Developmental Disability who are waiting for Developmental Disability services in New Mexico. Individuals who are registered for the DD Waiver are given an opportunity to receive State General Funded Services on a first come, first serve basis, as funding is available.

Is there priority preference for people who are in crisis in North Carolina? There may be emergency services availed if you are in crisis. There also may be other supports and services available if you are Medicaid eligible.

What Services Are Offered & What Are The Service Limitations?

What services does the Medicaid waiver program offer in North Carolina? Services vary by program. The North Carolina Innovations Waiver provides: Assistive Technology Equipment and Supplies; Community Guide Services; Community Networking Services; Community Transition Services; Crisis Services; Day Supports; Financial Support Services; Home Modifications; In-Home Skill Building; Personal Care; In-Home Intensive Support; Individual Goods and Services; Natural Supports Education; Residential Supports; Respite; Specialized Consultation Services; Supported Employment; and Vehicle Modifications.

Does North Carolina offer community group homes? North Carolina offers group homes, assisted living, Supervised living facilities, Family care homes, and adult care homes to persons with disabilities. Residential Supports are provided to individuals who live in a community residential setting that meets the home and community based characteristics. Group Homes for Developmentally Disabled Adults are licensed for 2-9 developmentally disabled adult residents. Supervised living facilities cannot exceed 3 beds. Family care homes cannot exceed 6 beds Adult care homes are residences for aged and disabled adults who may require 24-hour supervision and assistance with personal care needs.

Does North Carolina offer supported living? Yes, North Carolina offers support to live in your own home. Personal Care services provide support, supervision and engaging participation with eating, bathing, dressing, personal hygiene and other activities of daily living. Personal Care services are provided in the home.

Are there still state owned institutions in North Carolina? North Carolina has three large state Developmental Centers housing 1,400 Americans with developmental disabilities. North Carolina Institutions include: Caswell Developmental Center (400 people), Murdoch Developmental Center (500 people), and J. Iverson Riddle Developmental Center (500 people).

How Do You Select A Provider?

Do providers work for the state? No, waiver providers in North Carolina are hired by private agencies or may be independent providers. In some cases, the individual/legally responsible person actually hires the provider.

About how many providers are there in the state? There are over 1,200 adult care homes in North Carolina. There are about 200 certified Medicaid waiver agencies.

Do you have a choice in providers? Yes, in North Carolina you are encouraged to select your own provider. A unique option of the NC Innovations Waiver is Self-direction known as Individual and Family Directed Supports. Under this option, the individual/legally responsible person becomes the employer in the Employer of Record model. A second option is Agency with Choice. In this model, the individual/legally responsible person works closely with an agency to hire, train or arrange for training, schedule work and evaluate their direct services staff.

How Do You Become A Provider?

Provider Customer Service - For general questions or correspondence, call CSC at 1-800-688-6696.

Additional Information
Providers who offer Day Treatment, Intensive In‐Home or Community Support Team are required to meet CABHA standards. Providers may deliver any other service without meeting CABHA requirements, such as outpatient therapy, medication management, Psychosocial Rehabilitation, Mobile Crisis Team, all Substance Abuse services and all services for individuals with Developmental Disabilities. A Critical Access Behavioral Health Agency or “CABHA” is a provider agency offering a range of mental health and/or substance abuse services for a particular age and disability group. Only providers wishing to deliver Day Treatment, Intensive In‐Home or Community Support Team must meet CABHA requirements. CABHAs will have a psychiatrist and clinical oversight to provide you with the highest quality services.
NC Providers

North Carolina Providers


The ARC of NC 800.662.8706
Serving North Carolina
The Arc provides direct supports and services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) that enable people to lead full rich lives in the community.

Easter Seals UCP 1-800-662-7119
Serving North Carolina
Offers a variety of services to help people with disabilities address life's challenges & achieve personal goals.