LIDDAs can request that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) certify an employee other than a licensed psychologist to conduct a determination of intellectual disability (DID). This can be especially helpful to LIDDAs that are facing an increase in the number of DIDs to be completed with the launch of Community First Choice.

The qualifications for this certification are outlined in Texas Administrative Code, Title 40, Part 1, Chapter 5, Subchapter D, Diagnostic Assessment.

HHSC maintains the formatted version of Subchapter D on its website to enhance public access to program information. The Texas Register and the Texas Administrative Code remain the official sources for all rules.

To Learn More

To begin the process, LIDDAs can send an email with supporting documents to caprequest@hhsc.state.tx.us. Send emails without encryption to ensure your request is processed in a timely manner.

General FAQs

  1. Where can I find the requirements for certification?
    The requirements are in the Texas Administrative Code.

  2. I am a licensed psychologist in Texas who conducts Determinations of Intellectual Disability (DIDs) for a local intellectual and developmental disability authority (LIDDA). Do I have to be certified by the DADS?
    No, certification does not apply to psychologists licensed by the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP) to practice independently.

  3. What kind of license is required for certification?
    You must have a current license granted by the TSBEP for one of the following:

    • Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA)
    • Licensed Specialist in School Psychology (LSSP)
    • Provisionally licensed psychologist
  4. The TAC says I have to be an "employee" of a LIDDA or state supported living center (SSLC). Do I have to work full-time?
    As long as you are an employee, your status (i.e., full-time or part-time) is not relevant for certification.

  5. I am an LPA, but I don't work for a LIDDA or an SSLC. Can I get certified anyway?
    No, to be certified you must be employed by a LIDDA or an SSLC. It is the responsibility of the LIDDA or SSLC to request certification on your behalf.

  6. I am an LPA and have a contract with a LIDDA to conduct DIDs in addition to my private practice. Should I get certified?
    Yes, you must be certified. However, before the LIDDA submits the request on your behalf, it must change your "contractor" status to "employee."

    Regarding your reference to a private practice, you are encouraged to review Rule §465.2 Supervision which states "…psychological associates and provisionally licensed psychologists must be under the supervision of a licensed psychologist and may not engage in independent practice."

Current or Previous Certification FAQs

  1. I was certified by the former Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation (TDMHMR) but left the state to work in the private sector. If I am hired by a LIDDA to conduct DIDs, can I use my previous certification?
    No, your original certification became ineffective when you resigned your previous position. If you are hired by a LIDDA to conduct DIDs, the LIDDA must submit a new request for certification on your behalf.

  2. I've been conducting DIDs for the same LIDDA since 1999. Is there anything I need to do after adoption of the new Chapter 5, Provider Clinical Responsibilities – Intellectual Disability Services Subchapter D, Diagnostic Assessment?
    No action is required by you or your employer (the LIDDA). As long as you remain employed by the same LIDDA and meet the other requirements, your certification remains in effect.

  3. What is the proper way to sign a DID report?
    Certification applies to persons who are not licensed to practice independently. As such, in accordance with Section 501.004(a) of the Occupations Code, a certified authorized provider may not represent him or herself as a "psychologist." DADS recommends signing reports and endorsements using the term "Certified Authorized Provider" followed by the number found on the certificate issued by DADS. Although some certificates were issued with a number preceded by "P" (e.g., P2001) use of the P is no longer appropriate. Examples of appropriate ways to sign:

    • John Smith, Certified Authorized Provider #2001
    • John Smith, MS, LPA, Certified Authorized Provider #2001
  4. My co-worker's certificate uses the term "TDMHMR Certified Psychologist" and my certificate uses the term "Certified Authorized Provider." Which one is correct?

    Both certificates remain in effect as long as both persons meet requirements. See the following table for terms that may appear on a certificate based on when it was issued. Note: Use of the term "psychologist" was discontinued starting Sept. 1, 2013, in response to House Bill 807 (83rd Texas Legislature, 2013). The current term mirrors the term that will be codified in the new Chapter 5, Subchapter D, which is effective November 2015.

    Date Issued Issuing Agency Terms Used
    Before 9/1/04 TDMHMR
    • TDMHMR Certified Psychologist
    • Certified Psychologist
    9/1/04 – 8/31/13 DADS
    • DADS Certified Psychologist
    • Certified Psychologist
    9/1/13 or later DADS
    • DADS Certified Provider
    • Authorized Provider
    • Certified Authorized Provider
    Current DADS
    • Certified Authorized Provider
  5. Am I supposed to get my certificate renewed every year?
    No, there is no renewal process.

  6. If I change my name due to marriage or divorce, will I get a new certificate?
    No, your original certificate remains in effect as long as you meet requirements.

  7. Can I use my certification at another LIDDA or SSLC?
    No, your status as a certified authorized provider is specific to the LIDDA or SSLC listed on the certificate. If your certificate was issued before Sept. 1, 2004, it likely does not identify a specific LIDDA or SSLC, but the certificate nevertheless remains in effect.

  8. Does my certificate expire?
    No, your certificate remains in effect as long as you meet the requirements, including employment with the LIDDA or SSLC on the certificate, and current TSBEP licensure.

  9. I lost my certificate – what should I do?
    Your manager may request a new certificate by sending an email to caprequest@hhsc.state.tx.us with the following information:

    • Name of certified staff
    • Certificate number
    • Supervisor's attestation of certified staff's original hire date and continuous employment with the LIDDA or SSLC
    • Scanned copy of TSBEP license (excluding those persons who were grandfathered without a license in December 2000)
  10. I am certified to conduct DIDs at an SSLC where I am employed to work 4 days per week. I have an opportunity to keep my current job but also work part-time for a LIDDA. Can I do that?
    Yes, you may conduct DIDs for both entities if you are:

    • employed by both,
    • certified to conduct DIDs for both, and
    • the arrangement does not create a conflict of interest.

    For example, you may not endorse a DID that you conducted as an employee of the other entity.

    Before you enter into a dual employment situation, talk to your current and prospective employers to ensure they are aware of and in support of the arrangement.

Entity Requesting Certification FAQs

  1. I have a new employee that needs to be certified. What do I submit and to whom do I send it?
    Submit a request to caprequest@hhsc.state.tx.us with the following information:

    40 TAC §5.161 Requirements Documentation Accepted
    Current employment with the LIDDA or SSLC Statement in email (or scanned copy of signed letter) from the employee's supervisor attesting to the date of employment by the LIDDA or SSLC.
    Current licensure as:
    1. a provisionally licensed psychologist;
    2. a licensed psychological associate (LPA); or
    3. a licensed specialist in school psychology (LSSP)
    Scanned copy of current TSBEP license
    Successful completion of graduate course work in individual intellectual assessment Scanned copy of graduate school transcript with course(s) marked or highlighted
    Supervised experience or successful completion of graduate course work in adaptive behavior assessment Options (choose one):
    • Vita or resume;
    • Scanned letter signed by clinical supervisor; or
    • Scanned copy of graduate school transcript with course(s) marked or highlighted.
    One year of employment, internship, or practicum in the field of intellectual disability Vita or resume
  2. As the director of IDD services at a LIDDA, I am ready to make an offer to an applicant who seems qualified, but I'm not sure. Can I find out if an applicant meets the certification requirements before I hire her?
    Yes, if you submit the required information (excluding verification of employment) DADS will review the information and let you know if the applicant meets the requirements to be certified. After you hire the person, you must notify DADS to request the certificate. DADS can issue the certificate as long as the applicant's license remains current. If license expiration is imminent, DADS may request a copy of the renewed license before issuing the certificate.

  3. I work for a LIDDA and want to hire a person who works part time at an SSLC, and who is certified to conduct DIDs at the SSLC, to work part time for my LIDDA. Is that arrangement acceptable?
    You must seek certification on behalf of your new employee by submitting the required information. However, before extending an offer of employment, all parties involved should be aware of and in support of the arrangement. As a reminder, the SSLC is subject to state Human Resources (HR) policy. As such, the SSLC must ensure the arrangement does not violate HR policy concerning "Outside Employment (Moonlighting)."

  4. Do I notify DADS when a certified authorized provider leaves employment?
    Although not required, notification of DADS that a certified authorized provider is no longer employed by you (i.e., LIDDA or SSLC) will help ensure DADS has the most current information.

  5. If I hire a person who is certified to conduct DIDs for another LIDDA or SSLC do I have to do anything?
    Yes, in accordance with rules effective November 15, 2015, you must submit documentation to DADS requesting certification for the certified authorized provider to conduct DIDs on your behalf.

  6. I am a Licensed Psychologist (LP) employed by a LIDDA and also manage an employee who is a Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA) and a certified authorized provider (CAP) to conduct DIDs. When that CAP conducts a DID for a PASRR eligible resident at a non-LIDDA location (e.g., nursing facility) I do not supervise his work. He conducts the DID and signs the report based on his status as a CAP only (not as an LPA).When that same CAP conducts a DID at the LIDDA office and I am present in the office, he signs those DID reports as an LPA (not as a CAP) and I sign the report as the supervising psychologist. We then bill Medicaid for the DID under my provider number because he is an LPA under my supervision. Are both practices acceptable and are we following appropriate procedures?
    Yes, both approaches are correct based on different policy. The first situation complies with statute and HHSC rules concerning diagnostic eligibility that allow a CAP employed by a LIDDA to conduct and sign DID reports without any supervision/oversight by a Licensed Psychologist.

    The second situation complies with Texas Medicaid which reimburses DIDs conducted by a LP or an LPA using the supervising LP's NPI/TPI and CPT 90791 (and appropriate modifier).

    Reminder: billing for the DID conducted by the LPA is allowed only if the LP is in the same building/office which means that in many if not most circumstances, the LPA cannot bill. In circumstances in which a bill cannot be launched (e.g., a full psychological evaluation is not performed or the LP and LPA are not in the same building) that time spent can go into a Medicaid Administrative Claim (MAC) since the DID is required before the person can access Medicaid-funded services. Source: Texas Medicaid State Plan, Appendix 1 to Attachment 3.1-A, Page 13e. Please also see TMPPM, Behavioral Health handbook, Section 6, Subsections 6.1.3, 6.2.1, 6.9. Please note that included diagnostic codes (subsection 6.9.2) include the IDD diagnostic codes: 317, 3180, 3181, 3182, and 319.

  7. A Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA) employed by a LIDDA works solely under the supervision of a Licensed Psychologist (LP) associated with the LIDDA. The LP reviews and signs all of the LPA's DID reports. Does that LPA need to become certified by HHSC?
    If all DID reports that are completed by that LPA are signed by the supervising licensed psychologist associated with the LIDDA, then that LPA does not need to become a certified authorized provider.

Miscellaneous FAQs

  1. How can I find out if a psychologist is licensed?
    Please visit the TSBEP website.