TX Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities Waiver

Published on
December 19, 2023
Last updated
April 19, 2024
Written by
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Katie Wilkinson
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The Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities Waiver provides services to individuals with developmental disabilities ages 0 or older who meet an ICF/IID level of care.
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Overview of TX Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities Waiver

The Texas Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities (DBMD) waiver program, established on March 1, 1995, aims to provide community-based services and support to individuals with legal blindness, deafness, or conditions leading to deafblindness, coupled with an additional disability impacting functional abilities. The program’s primary goals include assisting individuals to live in their own or their family’s home or small group settings, enhancing their quality of life, functional independence, health, and well-being. It seeks to supplement, not replace, existing informal and formal supports, offering services like residential habilitation, respite, intervener, supported employment, and employment assistance through both consumer-directed and traditional agency options.

Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for the DBMD waiver, individuals must meet specific criteria, including disability status and functional limitations. Key eligibility factors encompass:

  1. Legal blindness or deafness, or a condition leading to deafblindness.
  2. At least one additional disability limiting functional abilities.
  3. Requirements for a level of care typically provided in an Intermediate Care Facilities for individuals with Intellectual disability (ICF/ID).
  4. Financial eligibility as determined by the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).

Services and Supports

The Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities Waiver provides a range of services and supports, including:

  1. Residential Habilitation Services: Assistance with daily living activities in a residential setting.
  2. Day Habilitation Services: Support for community participation and skill development.
  3. Supported Employment and Employment Assistance: Helping individuals find and maintain employment.
  4. Intervener Services: Providing support for communication and access to information.
  5. Respite: Temporary relief for caregivers.
  6. Behavioral Support: Services to address challenging behaviors.
  7. Nursing Services: Providing necessary medical care.
  8. Occupational, Physical, and Speech Therapy: Therapeutic services to enhance functional abilities.
  9. Dietary Services: Nutrition planning and support.
  10. Minor Home Modifications: Adaptations to the home environment for accessibility and safety.
  11. Adaptive Aids and Medical Supplies: Equipment and supplies to support daily living and medical needs.
  12. Transition Assistance Services: Support for transitioning from institutional settings to community living.
  13. Case Management: Coordinating and managing services and supports.

Compensation for Caregivers

Under the DBMD waiver, participants can direct their own services, including selecting their caregivers. Caregivers can receive compensation through this program. The process involves:

  1. Verifying caregiver qualifications.
  2. Documentation and reporting of services provided.
  3. Collaboration with a Financial Management Services Agency (FMSA) for administrative aspects.

Limitations and Challenges

While the DBMD waiver offers significant support, it faces limitations like capped funding, limited service slots, and regional restrictions in provider choice. These factors can impact the accessibility and flexibility of the program for potential beneficiaries.

A Note from Givers

If you believe you or a loved one may benefit from the Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities Waiver, we encourage you to explore your eligibility for this valuable support. Fill out our form to determine if your loved one may be eligible for assistance under this program.


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