The DDA Connection


The Maryland Department of Health - Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) is committed to delivering consistent, user-friendly and transparent communication. To that end, we are moving to a weekly newsletter format in which you will receive brief updates that reflect our focus areas. We look forward to getting feedback from you so that we may continue to keep you up to date with relevant information. Please use the survey link at the end to respond.

Federal Programs Updates

Appendix K - Residential Retainer Days 

This communication provides an important update about the Developmental Disabilities Administration’s Appendix K Community Living - Group Home Retainer Payments. 

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently approved the DDA’s Appendix K amendment to provide more flexibility related to accessing the Community Pathways’ Waiver residential retainer fees.

As of January 1, 2022, the DDA Community Living - Group Home providers may access the Community Pathways Waiver residential retainer fees, 18 days per calendar year, as stipulated in the Community Pathways Waiver.

Providers can access the Community Pathways Waiver residential retainer fees even if they:

  • Have not used any or all of the Appendix K Community Living - Group Home Retainer Payments; or 
  • Have exhausted all Appendix K Community Living - Group Home Retainer Payments.

Click on this link to view the following updated documents that reflect these updates:

Questions related to retainer payments should be directed to your Regional Office.

DDA Policy Updates 

The DDA is happy to announce that the following policies have been published in PolicyStat:

To find the initial draft policies, along with a summary of stakeholder input and the final track change policy, you can visit the DDA Policy Stakeholder Input Archive webpage.  

The DDA is seeking public input on the following proposed policies posted to the DDA’s Policy Stakeholder Input webpage: 

You can access the proposed policies here: DDA Policy Stakeholder Input Dedicated Webpage. 

Public comments will be accepted beginning April 14, 2023 through April 28, 2023.

Please submit comments electronically to or mail them to the DDA Federal Program Unit at 201 West Preston Street, 4th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21201. Please include in the subject line of your email, “Input on Policy,” and include the name of the policy you are commenting on. (For example,Input on Respite Care Policy.”)

If you have questions or need any accommodations, please reach out to the DDA Federal Programs Policy Lead, Danielle Coles at

Self-Directed Services

Financial Management and Counseling Services (FMCS) Guidance Update

The FMCS guidance for stakeholders has been updated with plain language in mind and includes important updates, including but not limited to the following:

  • Streamlining FMCS Transition

A Transition File will be used to support the participant and their employees to

be set up with the new FMCS. This means that most tax forms and documents

will not need to be recreated with the new FMCS.

  • Additional flexibilities to budget modifications

People self-directing and their teams can now move funding to adjust the

number of hours used in Meaningful Day Services (Day Habilitation,

Community Development Services, Employment Services) and Personal

Supports. This means that hours can be easily moved to meet the person’s

needs quickly.

  • Updates to Support Broker Startup hours

The guidance now includes clear instructions for how Support Brokers can bill

 people for Support Broker hours used before the person began self-directing.

Reference:  DDA - FMCS Transition, PCP, SDS Budget Sheet, and Timesheet/Invoice Process Updates and Guidance - Updated April 12, 2023

Note: A correction was made to the guidance posted on April 11, 2023.  Please disregard that version and use the April 12, 2023 version noted above.

Appendix K Unwinding

The Developmental Disabilities Administration will be conducting a webinar on April 21, 2023 from noon to 1:30 p.m. regarding the unwinding of the remaining DDA Appendix K flexibilities. We will also highlight flexibilities that will continue under the DDA-operated Medicaid Waivers.


Programs Updates

Maryland Community of Practice for Supporting Families Webinar

Please join the DDA and the Maryland  Community of Practice for Supporting Families for its monthly webinar series. 

This month we will focus on Visiting with Your Coordinator of Community Services: In-Person Monitoring on Tuesday, May 25, 2023, at noon.

Mary Anne Kane Breschi, parent and the DDA’s Director of Family Supports, welcomes Nicolette Paparoidamis, DDA’s Director of Coordinators Of Community Services, to share information about In-Person Monitoring. The discussion will include its purpose, the CCS’ requirements and the critical role it plays in ensuring people are living their best lives. 

We will also discuss challenges and potential barriers to in-person visits that people and families might face, as well as possible solutions.  

Please join us to learn more. We look forward to seeing you on May 25, 2023!


If you have questions related to registering for this webinar, please contact Dr. Yemonja Smalls, DDA’s Director of Training and Development at 

If you have questions regarding the webinar, please contact Mary Anne Kane Breschi, DDA’s Family Services Director at

Community Settings Questionnaire

Save The Date! 

The DDA will be hosting a webinar on Thursday, June 1, 2023 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on how to facilitate conversations related to the completion of the Community Settings Questionnaire (CSQ) as well as a review of the Community Settings Rule (CSR) guidance. Plan to join us for this interactive and informative session that will assist teams with this collaborative process. You won’t want to miss it! Formal registration links will be sent by May 4, 2023. 

Do you have questions you’d like to see addressed during the training? If so, please submit them here no later than Friday, May 19, 2023. Looking forward to a great conversation!

We want you to join the DDA Quality Advisory Council!

The DDA Quality Advisory Council (QAC) is looking for new members to join! Do you strive for quality outcomes? Have a knack for detail? How about a passion for data? If so, you might be a good fit for the DDA QAC!    

The QAC provides input and recommendations to the DDA in an effort to continually enhance the quality of our support and service to adults and children with developmental disabilities in Maryland. 

 This is a great opportunity to collaborate with DDA and make a difference! Please review the current vacancies and consider joining the QAC by scanning the QR code below.


For more information about the DDA’s QAC contact Kiarra Bryd at or Nicole Kropfelder at

Joint DDA and DORS Training

We are excited about our continued partnership and quarterly joint training opportunities with the Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS). 

The purpose of this training series is to provide information related to services offered by our two agencies, and how we collaborate to promote maximum employment outcomes for people with developmental disabilities. Our next joint training sessions are listed below. Big shout out to Maryland Works Inc. for their collaboration in hosting the in-person and virtual joint training sessions! 

June 28 - 9-11 a.m.: In-person and virtual training. In-person training held at Maryland Works 10270 Old Columbia Rd # 100, Columbia, MD 21046

  • DORS' Pre-Employment Transition Services
  • DDA's Employment Discovery and Job Development Services

DATE CHANGE September 25 - 9-11 a.m.: In-person and virtual training. In-person training held at Maryland Works, 10270 Old Columbia Rd # 100, Columbia, MD 21046

  • Dual funding without “double dipping”

December 13 - 9-11 a.m.: In-person and virtual training. In-person training held at Maryland Works, 10270 Old Columbia Rd # 100, Columbia, MD 21046

  • Provider Agency and DORS' Field Service Engagement (collaboration, best practices, and mutual expectations)


Technology First 

Click below to view the March 28, 2023: Introduction to Enabling Technology and Remote Supports webinar. 


*Please note that separate YouTube links to the videos embedded in the recording above are provided for your viewing pleasure, due to copyright requirements. 

April 25, 2023, noon-1 p.m.: Enabling Technology & Quality of Life: My Home, My Health, My Privacy

This session will be an introduction to various technical devices individuals can have in their homes to promote independence and assist with maintaining their health. The presenter will discuss how having tech in one's home does not mean they will have a loss of privacy.


May 23, 2023, noon-1 p.m.: Enabling Technology & Inclusion: My Home, My Health, My Privacy (continued)

This session will be a continuation of April’s introduction to technical devices and the various options individuals have to help them to live safely in their homes.


Operations Update

LTSSMaryland Provider Non-EVV Billing Training Sessions

The DDA is holding LTSSMaryland provider billing training sessions for non-EVV services. This training is only for providers that will use the LTSSMaryland system in April 2023. To cover the breadth of material, these training sessions are two-day sessions.  

Staff must attend both days of the training to complete the training. Below are the dates to register for the sessions that work best for you. When registering, please have the following information ready: 

  • Agency FEIN#
  • Agency MA#
  • LTSSMaryland username  

The following staff members listed below in your agency should attend the training session.  

  • Fiscal Manager
  • Revenue Cycle Manager
  • Fiscal Staff

All training sessions will be conducted virtually. Following registration, training links will be sent one day in advance of each session. All class sessions will be held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Breaks, including lunch, will be scheduled throughout the day. The class size is limited to 15 participants per session.

When logging in to the training, please remember to:

  • Have your LTSSMaryland user credentials ready. If your staff need LTSSMaryland credentials, please create the credentials for them at least three days prior to the training session to facilitate ease of access to training materials.
  • Join using a laptop or desk computer with an internet connection. (Smartphones will not be adequate).
  • Keep your webcams on during the sessions so the training is more interactive for all.

Choose your training date and click the button to register for the two-day training session below:

Thursday, April 20th

Friday, April 21st


Thursday, April 27th

Friday, April 28th


If you have any questions about these sessions, please contact MaryJane Osazuwa, LTSSMaryland System Business Analyst, by emailing her at

Utilization Review Launch and Utilization Review Standard Operating Procedures

Liberty Healthcare Corporation will begin conducting Utilization Reviews (UR) to evaluate compliance with the DDA standards related to financial accountability.

Utilization reviews will be verifying: 

  • Service delivery through provider service documentation.
  • Services are delivered as authorized in participants’ Person-Centered Plans (PCPs). 
  • Services are delivered by qualified staff. 
  • Claims are paid in accordance with the reimbursement methodology specified in the Waiver.

Please review the UR Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) guidance on the DDA website and linked to this communication. The guidance provides details related to definitions, sampling procedure and the UR process.

The URs will provide an understanding of the strengths and opportunities related to each area of evaluation. The reviews also will provide the DDA with important information on any needed training and technical assistance to ensure compliance with DDA standards that support participants receiving services as outlined in their PCPs.

The initial review period for the URs will begin on April 17, 2023 and will evaluate a random sample of claims for service provided between July 1, 2021 and December 31, 2022. Future reviews beginning July 1, 2023 will review a quarterly time period (beginning with January 1, 2023 through March 31, 2023).

If you have any questions please contact Jennifer Mettrick, Executive Director, MD Quality at or La’Kisha Alvarado, QIO contract monitor/Program Manager at 

If providers would like to submit a primary contact name and email address other than the organization’s CEO/Executive Director to Liberty for the purposes of Utilization Review communications, please send the contact information to

Please find the link to the UR SOP below:

ARPA Competitive Grant Award Announcement Delay

Submissions are now closed for the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Competitive Grant, which will provide additional funding for DD licensed and certified providers and nonprofit community organizations that support the DD community.

The timeline for grant award notifications and the start of funding has been revised. Award letters will be sent out on May 15, 2023 and funding will begin on July 1, 2023. 

For program-related questions, please email

5.5% ARPA Reconciliation Webinar 4/27/23

Save the Date!

The DDA will be conducting a webinar on April 27, 2023 from noon to 1 p.m. regarding the 5.5% ARPA reconciliation process. 

To register for the webinar, please click the button below:


Missed a previous DDA Connection? 

Click here to view the archive.

Click here to view upcoming events on our DDA Training Calendar.

DDA Vision

People with developmental disabilities will have full lives in the communities of their choice where they are included, participate and are active citizens.

DDA Mission

Create a flexible, person-centered, family-oriented system of support so people can have full lives.

DDA Headquarters

201 W. Preston Street, 4th Floor

Baltimore, MD 21201

Phone: (410)767-5600

Fax: (410)767-5850

Toll Free: 1(844)253-8694

Have feedback about our communication? Take our survey!