Resource Allocation Information

The Office for Citizens with Developmental Disabilities (OCDD) uses a Resource Allocation System to make sure that services in the New Opportunities Waiver (NOW) are available to meet the support needs for all people receiving services. This Resource Allocation approach works as part of the Tiered Waiver Process when someone’s needs require a move to the NOW.

In 2008, the Louisiana legislature directed LDH/OCDD to put in place processes to control costs for operating the NOW.  This request was made to make sure the NOW was sustainable and cost-effective.  Specific strategies that were required included:  

  • a resource allocation model based on use of a uniform needs-based assessment;
  • containment of individual expenses by more effectively planning based on need; and
  • programmatic/fiscal reviews to increase efficiencies. 

This directive resulted in the NOW rule LAC 50:XXL.13704. With this rule, effective February 1, 2009, needs-based assessments (originally the Supports Intensity Scale and the LA Plus) and a resource allocation system were added as part of the support planning process. The assessments were used to identify the type and amount of support need for each person needs to do certain things/activities each day.  The system had 7 resource allocation “levels”.   Each person is assigned to the level that lines up with their needs.

The resource allocation model and the algorithm have been adjusted to address the following:

  • concerns with costs and resources,
  • simplification of the assessment of the assessment process,
  • changes now that the Tiered Waiver Process is in place.

 The changes include:

  • OCDD stopped using the Supports Intensity Scale as one of the needs-based assessments. OCDD now solely utilizes the LA Plus assessment, created by a team of Louisiana-based stakeholders with input from Louisiana-based medical and behavioral health professionals. The LA Plus is tied to Louisiana needs and services. There are no costs to using the LA Plus.
  • A checklist of medical/physical and behavioral support needs was added to the LA Plus: The Routine Supports for Medical/Physical and Behavioral Health Support Needs Checklist.  The checklist identifies regularly provided support to address more complex support needs and determines level assignment into the specialty levels 4,5,or 6.
  • There are now 6 levels instead of 7 (original Levels 1A and 1B combined to become Level 1).

For each level, there are statistically-driven characteristics of the types of needs and services appropriate for those within each level. For each level, there are a recommended amount of Individual and Family Support (IFS) service hours, as well as daytime support hours via day habilitation services, supported employment services, etc., available based on the person's current living situation. Generally, these recommendations of hours should meet the needs of most people in that level. However, because the NOW is not a capped waiver program, there are mechanisms in place to request additional support hours beyond one’s assigned level, should they have unmet needs. The participant and their support team will need to provide justification for the additional supports to the Local Governing Entity (LGE). Please see the attached policy and forms below for additional information. 

Helpful Information on the Resource Allocation Process

If you have questions, please review the NOW Program and Resource Allocation frequently asked questions below, contact the Office for Citizens with Developmental Disabilities at 1.866.783.5553, or contact a local district/authority.