What to Look for in a DDS Group Home

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Group homes are often a good step for disabled individuals to grow and learn the life skills needed to promote independence in a safe environment. But what do you look for to make sure that the group home you consider will meet the needs of your loved one? Group homes that are operated by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) in the state is a great place to start.

What is a DDS Group Home?

Community residences—AKA Community Living Arrangements (CLAs) are group homes operated by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) regions or private agencies and provide disabled individuals with opportunities to live in a community housing environment.

These homes typically serve six or fewer individuals, and the houses come in various sizes and configurations (depending on the needs of the individuals they serve). Most of these homes receive reimbursement through the Medicaid Waiver Program. Some privately operated CLA’s are Intermediate Care Facilities (ICF)/MR certified. These group homes are licensed by DDS and certified by the Department of Public Health (DPH) under federal standards.

Durable medical equipment in use at a Boston group home

A typical group home living arrangement is defined as the following:

  • A community-based residential facility operated by a public or private non-profit organization or an institution authorized to serve no more than 16 residents.
  • The facility must be certified by an appropriate state agency under regulations issued according to section 1616(e) of the Social Security Act or under standards determined by the Secretary of Agriculture to be comparable to standards implemented by appropriate state agencies.
  • Provides the kind of comfortable atmosphere we would want for anyone we love. Most group homes accommodate four to five people, and all provide 24-hour staffing to assist individuals with daily living tasks.

Excellent Physical Accommodations

A group home should have physical accommodations that meet the needs of the residents that live there. Some of these physical accommodations might include:

  • Wide doorways and hallways designed to accommodate wheelchairs and other transfer devices
  • Ranch-style open floor plans that limit the need for stairs or steps
  • Lower counters, appliances, sinks, and furniture designed for accessibility for those in wheelchairs

Experienced Supervision

All group home residents need some degree of supervision. The needs of group home residents vary widely, from mental and behavioral impairments to specific medical conditions. Caregivers at group homes must be ready to handle a wide range of issues to ensure that the residents in their care are safe, have medical needs addressed, and provide the daily support they need.

Provides Services for Your Loved One

Group homes also develop skills that promote greater independence, such as personal grooming and care, shopping, using public transportation, managing finances, and other daily living activities. These services should include individualized development plans for each resident, focusing on building skills and gaining independence. Additional services may include social activities, community events, music and art programs, and much more.

Has the Appropriate Durable Medical Equipment

Every group home should have the durable medical equipment necessary to meet their residents’ needs. Whether these are installing wheelchair ramps and stairlifts, installing grab bars in bathrooms and bedrooms, or ceiling lift systems, the group home should have everything that your loved one could need to keep them safe and comfortable.

Looking for Durable Medical Equipment for Your Group Home?

Give us here at Lift and Care Systems a call. We have been serving disabled individuals and their caregivers in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island for over 20 years. We have the name-brand durable medical equipment that you need, such as Surehands Lift Systems, Bruno Stair Lifts, and Health Craft accessibility products (just to name a few). Contact us today for a free consultation at (508) 465-5254 or fill out our online contact form to speak to one of our durable medical equipment specialists today.

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