Services, Spending, Authorization, and Billing Update
OOD is committed to ensuring ongoing services for individuals with disabilities during these challenging times. While OOD’s work environment has temporarily changed, our service goals have not. We continue to accept applications and make eligibility determinations for individuals with disabilities. In the last two weeks (March 16 through March 29), OOD:
• Processed 419 applications
• Made 848 eligibility decisions
• Wrote 514 new plans
• Moved an additional 138 individuals into employed status
• Successfully closed the cases of 175 participants in employment
OOD is and will continue to, refer individuals to providers for vocational rehabilitation services as much as possible. OOD hopes that this information is helpful to you and plans to provide updates regularly.
OOD also understands that prompt payment of bills is vital to our provider organizations, and we are pleased to report that as of 03/26/2020, we are current in processing all bills out of our billing queue. If your organization has a bill that appears to be delayed for processing, please reach out to your local field office so that they can assist you with the matter.
Summer Youth Interim Update
OOD remains focused on providing a Summer Youth Experience that is meaningful and beneficial for our students and youth. We continue to prepare for Summer Youth through weekly communications with VR counselors and staff that contain information regarding providers who plan to provide services and their associated host business sites. Additionally, some initial Intake authorizations have been issued in connection with anticipated Summer Youth services.
In light of the recent announcement extending the closure of Ohio’s schools through May 1, we recognize that we must consider the evolving conditions surrounding COVID-19 and continue to follow the Governor’s directions surrounding this crisis. Considering the current circumstances, OOD is changing the beginning date for staff to create Summer Youth authorizations from 4/1/2020 to 5/1/2020. Please note that this change does not affect Intake authorization for Summer Youth: counselors and coordinators may continue to authorize for Intakes connected to Summer Youth, and providers may continue providing these Intake services.
While OOD remains committed to the delivery of services to students with disabilities this summer, we must begin to prepare ourselves for the idea that these services may look very different than how they have been traditionally delivered. We are beginning to discuss potential changes and/or alternatives to the historical summer youth model, particularly for early Summer Youth services.
We are looking to partner with our provider community in this endeavor and ask that you share your ideas surrounding new and innovative ways to provide services to youth this summer with us. We appreciate the feedback you already offered during the recent provider calls and would like to solicit additional ideas from you. Please send your ideas directly to firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to your local Provider & Contract Management Unit (PCMU) representative.
Interim Guidance - Provider Management & Support
OOD and its Monitoring & Compliance Unit (MCU) regularly reviews and monitors provider services. PCMU collaborates with providers on any corrective action plans resulting from these reviews to help improve service quality and billing/reporting accuracy.
At this time, OOD’s primary focus is on implementing strategies to support providers through the current COVID-19 crisis. Therefore, OOD is temporarily postponing our routine provider review processes outside of those with a direct connection to participant health and safety.
The Provider & Contract Management Unit will continue to support providers through exploring and sharing best practices and technologies for remote service provision, considering additional flexibilities in service provisions, reaching out directly to providers to understand their needs at this time, working with providers to train on Pre-ETS (including training, service proposal reviews, and support), supporting case management contracts, piloting Innovation in Technology projects, and supporting field staff and providers with technical guidance.
Please contact your local PCMU representative for any questions regarding this guidance.