by Jose E. De Jesus

Determining eligibility to apply for services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities: the process in New York State

In New York State, the Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities (OMRDD), through its Developmental Disabilities Services Offices (DDSO), determine if a person has an intellectual or developmental disability, including Asperger and Autism, and is eligible to apply for OMRDD services.

In order to have a determination of eligibility, individuals/families/advocates need to submit documents to their County’s DDSO to support the intellectual and/or developmental disability. Following is a list of the documents required.

  • A full scale psychological evaluation, completed within the last 3 years, establishing IQ
  • An adaptive behavior scale such as the Vineland II or the ABAS II
  • A psychosocial report, social history or other background report that indicates that the disability occurred before the age of 22
  • A physical evaluation completed within the last year, including diagnosis
  • Any specialty reports relevant to the individual (neurological, psychiatric, etc.)
  • Treatment summaries or reports from any previous or current psychiatric hospitalizations
  • Any previous evaluations referenced in the above documentation (i.e. a previous psychological evaluation)
  • Current IEP or Pre-school evaluations

This process is the gateway to apply for services provided by OMRDD, and does not mean that the person is eligible for all the services funded by the state agency.  The determination allows the person to apply for other services such a as day programs when the person transitions from school, residential placement and in-home services. Each service has its own requirements.

Sullivan, Orange, Rockland and Westchester Counties comprise the Hudson Valley DDSO, the local OMRDD agency responsible for the coordination and delivery of services to people with developmental disabilities and their families. I have provided for your convenience the address and telephone numbers for the main office, and for Sullivan and Orange Counties.

Main Office9 Wilbur Road
PO Box 470
Thiells, NY 10984
Phone: (845) 947-6100
Fax: (845) 947-6004
Sullivan County 457 Broadway
Suite 15
Monticello, N.Y. 12701
Phone: (845) 791-7620
Fax: (845) 791-7624
Orange County 42 Rykowski Lane, Suite 2,
Middletown, NY 10941
Phone: (845) 695-7300
Fax: (845) 695-7388 or 695-7398

In Orange you may also access services through the Orange County Department of Community Mental Health by calling 291-2622  or you may visit

Jose E. De Jesus, his wife and three adult children are residents of Walden, N.Y.  Jose has a Master of Public Administration and over thirty years of experience in community mental health – developmental disabilities services, substance abuse services and alternatives to incarceration.

Currently, he oversees community based services in county government for individuals with developmental disabilities, including eligibility determination to apply for services through the NYS Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities and the Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Waiver.

Jose has been an Adjunct Instructor at Mt. Saint Mary College, Mercy College and Elizabeth Seton College where he taught courses in Social Welfare Policy, Social Sciences, and American History and Government. Additionally he was an instructor of the NYS Department of Motor Vehicle’s Drinking Driver Program at Westchester and Rockland Community Colleges. He owns the Driver Safety Institute which operates the NYS Drinking Driver Program; part of New York State’s effort to reduce the personal and property losses caused by drivers under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.