Weekly Focus October 28, 2016

An update and information report for doctors who provide consultative exams for OOD’s Division of Disability Determination
Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities

Kevin L. Miller, Executive Director

October 28, 2016

The mission of the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency is to ensure individuals with disabilities achieve quality employment, independence and disability determination outcomes.

What's Inside:

OOD Reaches 29,790 Individuals with Disabilities Served

women in wheelchairs

Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities’ (OOD) Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program served 29,790 individuals with disabilities in Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2016, which is an increase of 3.9 percent compared to FFY 2015. OOD’s VR counselors helped find employment for 6,358 Ohioans with disabilities. In addition, OOD’s counselors wrote more than 14,000 new plans and made more than 19,400 eligibility decisions, exceeding the agency’s goal in both areas.


In addition, OOD’s VR staff made significant improvements in the areas of time to rehabilitation and cost per rehabilitation. The time to rehabilitation dropped from 22.8 months to 19.4 months. The overall cost per rehabilitation decreased from $8,772 in FFY 2015 to $7,480 in FFY 2016. For more information about VR services, visit oodworks.com.


Employment First Taskforce Issues Guidance on Limitations for Subminimum Wage to Individuals with Disabilities

Over the last several months, the Employment First Taskforce agencies, including the Ohio Departments of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), Education (ODE) and OOD, have developed joint guidance on Section 511 of the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Section 511 of WIOA places limitations on the payment of subminimum wage to individuals with disabilities by employers using special wage certificates under Section 14 (c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This guidance describes the new requirements and is intended for VR staff, county board of developmental disabilities staff, educators and 14 (c) certificate holders. It reflects Ohio’s priorities, including the expectation that youth and adults with disabilities should have opportunities to pursue competitive integrated employment.


The joint guidance is available for download from Ohio Employment First at www.ohioemploymentfirst.org/up_doc/Taskforce-Joint-Guidance_Section-511.pdf.

Improving Services for Job Ready Candidates

Lean Group

 Since September, OOD’s Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) field staff (led by Area Managers Curt Morman and Brenda Cronin) have been meeting to evaluate the process for moving consumers from job ready status to successful case closure. Discussions include how to make the process more efficient and how to improve service delivery to OOD customers. Recommendations for a new process will be presented before year’s end.

OOD's Case Service Payments Converting to Direct Deposit

OOD is in the process of converting case service payments to direct deposit. Case service payments are made to VR providers who administer assistance and professional development to OOD job seeking consumers. The change to direct deposit payments is in partnership with Ohio Shared Services (OSS). OSS will provide OOD with help and support during the transition. Transferring funds electronically will allow VR providers to see payments from OOD in real-time. The change to direct deposit payments will increase staff efficiency and improve our relationships with our partners. Direct deposit payments will go live December 31st. For more information about the conversion to direct deposit payments, visit www.supplier.obm.ohio.gov.


Hiring Veterans with Disabilities

veteran hand and business hand


Helping veterans with disabilities get or retain employment is important to OOD. Recently, Ohio Department of Veterans Services (ODVS) Director Chip Tansill joined OOD Executive Director Kevin Miller at the Toledo Job Fair and discussed ways the two state agencies can collaborate.


The agency’s VR counselors work with veterans who have disabilities to develop an individualized plan for employment that matches skills and interest with a career goal. OOD offers job training, vocational counseling, assistive technology, vehicle modifications and a network of community rehabilitation partners. If you are a veteran with a disability, you can apply for services here at OODworks.com.

Did You Know? November is Hire A Veteran Month

image of veteran

Ohio employers can make Hire a Veteran Month a success for the men and women who honorably served in the U.S. military. Employers will find the training these veterans received during their service makes them valuable, loyal employees and an irreplaceable part of Ohio’s workforce. For more information about services for veterans, visit the Ohio Department of Veterans Services at dvs.ohio.gov.

OOD By the Numbers


Vocational Rehabilitation


                                                                 Current                     FFY2017

Individuals in Job Ready Status:            2,943                            469

(For county level information

& map, visit our website)


Individuals Employed:                             2,427                            422

(Employed, not yet

successfully closed)


Successful Closures:                                                                    451

(Employed for over 90 days,

case closed successfully)


Disability Determination


(FFY 2017 as of 10/21/2016 – Week 3)


Applications Received:                                                           10,298


Determinations:                                                                        10,358


Productivity Per Work Year (PPWY)                                             330.6

(Total number of cases processed divided

by the number of work years funded)