Revision 20-2; Effective June 12, 2020

 

 

16100 Overview of Individual Rights and Services

Revision 20-2; Effective June 12, 2020

 

Rights Booklet and Handbook

The rights booklet, described in 40 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §9.190(e)(2) and the rights handbook, described in 40 TAC §4.117(c) may be found on the HHSC website at https://hhs.texas.gov/about-hhs/your-rights/office-ombudsman/hhs-ombudsman-publications. The booklet and handbook may also be obtained from HHSC by sending an email to OmbudsmanIDD@hhsc.state.tx.us

 

16200 General Complaint Information

Revision 20-2; Effective June 12, 2020

 

Local Intellectual and Developmental Disability Authority (LIDDA)

At the time of enrollment and annually thereafter, the LIDDA must inform the applicant and legally authorized representative (LAR), orally and in writing, of the processes for filing complaints about the provision of service coordination. This must be an easily understood process for persons and LARs to request a review of their concerns or dissatisfaction. The policy must explain how the person may receive assistance to request the review, the time frames for the review and the method by which the person is informed of the outcome of that review. The LIDDA must present this policy in the language with which the individual and LAR are most comfortable.

Each LIDDA must develop a process for receiving and resolving complaints from a program provider related to the LIDDA's provision of service coordination or the LIDDA's process to enroll an applicant in the Home and Community-based Services (HCS) Program. This process must include the LIDDA's telephone number and the toll-free number to the Intellectual and Development Disabilities (IDD) Ombudsman.

HCS Program Provider

The HCS provider must publicize and make available a process for eliciting complaints. The HCS provider must maintain a record of all verifiable resolutions of complaints received from individuals, their families and their LARs, as well as staff members, service providers, Consumer Directed Services (CDS) providers, the general public and the LIDDA. The HCS provider must establish a consumer/advocate advisory committee that will solicit, address and review all complaints from individuals and LARs about the program provider's operations.

When to Call the IDD Ombudsman

The IDD Ombudsman receives complaints from individuals, family members and the general public about the care, treatment or services provided to an individual. Individuals receiving services or family members of the individual may prefer to call the IDD Ombudsman to assist in resolving an issue rather than speaking with their LIDDA service coordinator (SC) or HCS provider.

A complaint may be reported to the IDD Ombudsman by anyone by calling 800-252-8154 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. A complaint may also be emailed to OmbudsmanIDD@hhsc.state.tx.us.

Written complaints may be mailed to:

Texas Health and Human Services Commission
IDD Ombudsman
P.O. Box 13247
Austin, TX 78711-3247
 

Resolution of Issues Between LIDDAs and Program Providers

LIDDAs and HCS providers are encouraged to work together to resolve any issues regarding service provision.

If a LIDDA SC identifies an issue of concern regarding an HCS provider, the SC should:

  • discuss the issue with the HCS provider to attempt to come to a resolution;
  • if the issue is resolved, document the resolution;
  • if the issue is not resolved, file a formal complaint with the HCS provider;
  • if the formal complaint process with the provider resolves the issue, document the resolution; and
  • if the formal complaint process does not resolve the issue, file a complaint with the IDD Ombudsman.

If an HCS provider identifies an issue of concern regarding a LIDDA SC, the program provider should:

  • discuss the issue with the SC to attempt to come to a resolution;
  • if the issue is resolved, document the resolution;
  • if the issue is not resolved, file a formal complaint with the LIDDA;
  • if the formal complaint process with the LIDDA resolves the issue, document the resolution; and
  • if the formal complaint process does not resolve the issue, file a complaint with the IDD Ombudsman.

IDD Ombudsman Website

The IDD Ombudsman website provides useful information regarding filing a complaint. Visit the website here: https://hhs.texas.gov/idd-help

Notification and Appeals Process (Regarding Complaints)

LIDDAs are required to develop processes for receiving complaints about the provision of LIDDA services. For the HCS Program, the LIDDA must notify individuals of the LIDDA's process for addressing concerns or dissatisfaction with service coordination, as required in TAC rules governing notification and appeal at TAC §2.46 (40 TAC, Chapter 2, Subchapter A).

State Protection and Advocacy Systems (P&A)

Public Law 106–402, 106th Congress: Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000

P&As are dedicated to promoting personal and civil rights of individuals with disabilities, including individuals with IDD. P&As are independent of service providers within the state and work at the state level to protect individuals with developmental disabilities by advocating on their behalf. P&As provide legal support to unserved or underserved populations to help them in the legal system for resolutions and systems change. In Texas, the P&A is Disability Rights Texas (DRTx) that provides legal services free of charge. The intake line is 800-252-9108 Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., or apply online at intake@DRTx.org. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can call the toll-free video phone at 866-362-2851 or Purple 3 video phone at 512-271-9391.