First Families from DDS Waitlist Receiving Services
For media inquiries, contact:
Ryan Stewart, OKDHS, DDS Communications Coordinator
Oklahoma Human Services Releases Cohort 1 Data
OKLAHOMA CITY (March 20, 2023) — Oklahoma Human Services announced it’s on track to end the 13-year Developmental Disability Services (DDS) waitlist.
DDS divided 4,993 applications into seven cohorts based on when they joined the waitlist, with a timeline to process each. Once contact is made with families, there is a 6– to 9-month process to transition someone off the waitlist and onto services.
41% of Cohort 1 is already approved for services, which matches the average percentage of DDS waiver approvals historically. Over 100 families are already receiving services and 33 families are approved but awaiting services.
“Today we celebrate families receiving services who waited over a decade,” said Dr. Deb Shropshire, director of Oklahoma Human Services. “This is a huge accomplishment! We recognize there is still significant work ahead to ensure every Oklahoman in need can access developmental disability services.”
Cohort 1 includes 340 applicants who joined the waitlist between April 2010 and January 2011.
“We’re on track to achieve our original goal of ending the waitlist within 24 months,” said DDS Division Director Beth Scrutchins. “As we’ve traveled the state helping families through this transition, it’s been a joy to see this dream come true for so many.”
DDS has been hosting regional meetings called PossABLE to help families navigate the transition from the waitlist to services.
“While our work to provide Oklahomans these critical services is far from over, today’s accomplishment is a testament to the progress we have made, and the momentum we’ve created to ensure Oklahoma families get the long overdue care they deserve,” said Governor Kevin Stitt. “My message to Oklahomans: Help is on the way.”
This announcement follows a historic investment from the Legislature and provider reimbursement rate increase to end the 13-year wait for services.
Waitlist families are encouraged to update their contact information by contacting DDS.Waitlist@okdhs.org or 866-521-3571.