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(4.51) What if the regional center agrees to a service, but there is no provider available?

(4.51) What if the regional center agrees to a service, but there is no provider available?

Sometimes your planning team will agree that you need a service, but there is no provider available. This can be a serious problem. Although it may be hard for the regional center, they must still use every possible means to fulfill your IPP.[1]Assoc. for Retarded Citizens-Calif. v. Dept. of Developmental Services, 38 Cal.3d 384, 388 (1985). Regional centers have no choice about whether to carry out your IPP, but they do have choices about how they do so. The regional center can look at these options:

  • They can ask existing providers if they will provide the service you need, even if it differs from the services they usually provide.
  • They can contract with different agencies to provide the services you need.
  • They can send a “Request for Proposals” (RFP) to the provider organizations in the area to see if an agency will develop new services.
  • They can see if a provider from a different area will come into your area and provide services for you.
  • They can ask for funds from DDS to initiate and develop a new program of services and supports.[2]Section 4648(e).

See Question 47 for the different ways regional centers can make sure you get the services and supports that are written in your IPP. Regional centers are expected to have services available in the community where you live. But, it may take time to develop the services. Sometimes, no provider will develop the service in your area.

The regional center may ask if you will move to a different area where there is a provider of the services you need. That is often a very difficult thing to do. Sometimes this happens if you need a group home and there isn’t one available in your area. Regional centers may do a “statewide search” for available placements and may find a place for you in another area of the state.

If the regional center says it does not have a particular service or support you need and want (and it is not available from a “generic” source) or the regional center will not provide it, you can appeal. (See Chapter 10.) But first consider the regional center’s reason for denying your request and see if there are alternatives you can agree to.

References
1 Assoc. for Retarded Citizens-Calif. v. Dept. of Developmental Services, 38 Cal.3d 384, 388 (1985).
2 Section 4648(e).