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Available for people using Individual Options, Level One, and SELF waivers

Vocational Habilitation

Vocational Habilitation is often called Voc Hab for short. It is a service which provides learning and work experiences, including volunteer work, that help to develop general skills that lead to integrated community employment in a job that matches the person's interests, strengths, priorities, and abilities.

Vocational Habilitation can help someone learn:

  • effective communication with supervisors, co-workers, customers, and other people in the workplace,
  • generally accepted community workplace conduct and dress
  • problem-solving skills and strategies,
  • workplace safety,
  • speaking up for themselves at work,
  • arranging and using transportation to get to and from work, and
  • how to advance on the path to community employment.

When to Apply this Service

Vocational Habilitation services may be available based on an understanding of each person's needs, discovered during an assessment..

Vocational Habilitation service cannot be used for long-term job support; instead, it must be used to support someone while they are learning general work skills that will help them get a job in the community. Activities are designed to support the community employment outcomes identified in a person’s individual service plan.

Services are expected to occur over a defined period of time and specific outcomes to be achieved that are decided upon by the person accessing the service working with their team. Vocational Habilitation services include activities such as ongoing support, information and referral to Career Planning services, disability benefits, and other appropriate services.

Ongoing support activities may include direct supervision, virtual support and in-person monitoring, counseling, and other supports that help develop job skills, including:

  • training to help the person maintain current skills, learn new work skills, attain self-determination goals, and improve social skills,
  • developing a plan of instruction and support, including task analyses to prepare the person for competitive integrated employment,
  • creating a plan to help the person transition to competitive integrated employment,
  • supporting and training the person to use Transportation services, public transportation or other community transportation resources,
  • assisting the person to use natural supports and community resources,
  • offering training to build problem-solving skills and meet job expectations, and
  • assisting the person with medication administration or with performing health-related activities while working.

Providing this Service

Agency providers that have a Medicaid provider agreement and are DODD-certified can provide this service. Voc Hab services can not be provided by independent providers.

Vocational Habilitation is provided as a group service. Staffing ratio should be a part of the person-centered planning process. The team is responsible for considering the level of supervision and support the person may require in various environments to ensure health and safety and achievement of outcomes identified in the ISP. No more than 16 individuals may receive services in one group regardless of funding source or service delivery method.

Vocational Habilitation services can be delivered using the following methods:

  • In-person in a non-residential setting separate from the person’s home
  • In-person in an integrated community setting for a group of four or fewer
  • Virtual support using interactive technology that has capability to engage in two-way, real-time audio and video communication


Training Requirements for this Service

After initial provider certification and annual training requirements, the following is required to provide this service.

Direct service providers, other than those who have at least one year of experience providing Vocational Habilitation at the point of hire, will be assigned and have access to a mentor.

No later than one year after hire, direct service providers, other than those who have at least one year of experience providing vocational habilitation at the point of hire, must successfully complete at least eight hours of training specific to Vocational Habilitation that includes but is not limited to:

  • skill-building to advance a person with disabilities on his or her path to community employment and development of the person’s strengths and skills necessary for competitive integrated employment,
  • and self-determination, which includes assisting the person to develop self-advocacy skills, to exercise his or her civil rights, to exercise control and responsibility over the services he or she receives, and to acquire skills that enable him or her to become more independent, productive, and integrated within the community.

Providers must successfully complete on-the-job training specific to each person they serve, including

  • what is important to the person and what is important for the person, and
  • the person’s support needs, such as behavioral support strategy, management of the person’s funds, and medication administration or delegated nursing.

Billing and Payment Information

All services must be delivered as specified in the individual service plan and authorized in Payment Authorization for Waiver Services, known as PAWS, to be successfully submitted for payment through eMBS.     

Payment rates, except for services provided in-person in an integrated community setting for a group of four of fewer, are based on individuals’ group assignments determined in the acuity assessment instrument (AAI) and the cost-of-doing business category assigned to the county in which services are provided.

Payment rates for services provided in-person in an integrated community setting for a group of four of fewer are based on the cost-of-doing business category assigned to the county in which services are provided.

The daily billing unit may be used when:

the provider delivers between five and seven hours of vocational habilitation in-person to the same person during one calendar day and the person accessing services does not qualify for or the provider elects not to receive the behavioral support or medical assistance rate modifications nor receive services in multiple modes on the same day. Additional information about rates and limitations are available in the service's rule and appendix, OAC 5123-9-14.