Choosing a Case Management Provider in Oregon
Written by Larry Deal
One of the biggest questions we hear is “How do I choose a case management entity?”
Think of a case management entity as your first stop, your foundation. It is the organization that’s going to support you with getting connected to the services that you or your loved one want and need to build a full life. The decision about where you get your case management services from is a really important one.
Oregon has a rich history as a national leader in developing progressive services for people with disabilities; as a result, residents have more case management options than people living in many other states.
What are your options then?
If you are 18 or older and have an intellectual or developmental disability, you can choose from two types of case management entity: either a CDDP or a Brokerage.
A CDDP is a Community Developmental Disabilities program. In the Portland metro area, (Clackamas Washington and Multnomah counties), CDDPs are actually run by county government. CDDP operations vary by region and in some areas, the CDDP is run by a private organization or nonprofit. CDDPs are responsible for protective service investigations and eligibility as well as case management for both children and adults with disabilities.
Brokerages, by design, have a more specialized focus as a case management entity. We solely provide case management and resource connections to people 18 and older who live in their own or family home. We are community-led primarily non-profit organizations who act as systems navigators, advocates, and connectors. Depending on where you live, you may have multiple brokerages to choose from. Brokerages came into existence as the result of grassroots advocacy by self-advocates, families, and community members driven to create essential services with a person-centered approach.
So, should I choose a CDDP or a Brokerage?
The short answer is: it depends on what you’re looking for.
Both CDDPs and Brokerages contract with the state of Oregon Department of Human Services to provide the same services. In theory, the services should be identical. However, each organization is a bit different – we all have different cultures, sizes, locations, and even approaches.
We recommend calling the CDDP Program Manager or Brokerage Director(s) of the Case Management Entities you’re interested in. Explain your unique situation and what your wants and support needs are.
Ask them, “In the first six months, what would you offer me and/or my family? What kinds of services can we expect? What kinds of resources will you link us to?”
Because each person’s situation is so different, this is a great way to find the right fit for you. We recognize making multiple calls when life is already busy can seem like a big ask – but we promise, it’s worth it. That time spent upfront can make all the difference.
If you’d like to see what’s available in your area, check out our website www.mybrokeragemychoice.org or ODDS’ website. On either site, you’ll find links to every CDDP and Brokerage in the state.
“I’ve made my choice: now what?”
Once you have chosen your Case Management Entity, just call the local CDDP where you received your eligibility.
If you’re choosing the local CDDP, they’ll assign you a case manager known as a Services Coordinator. If you’re choosing a brokerage, the CDDP will contact the brokerage and start the transfer process. Once the brokerage receives your file and contact information, expect to hear from a brokerage Personal Agent who will visit with you in your home – or setting of your choice – to go over entry paperwork and get services started.
Please keep in mind that your choice of Case Management Entity isn’t permanent. You can always switch to another brokerage or CDDP in your area if you’d like services elsewhere. And, if you move anywhere in the state, there’s at least one (if not several) Brokerage(s) or a CDDP in every one of Oregon’s 36 counties.
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