The 411 on Entitlement Programs

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Meeting eligibility criteria for a benefit or service does not necessarily guarantee that it will be provided. Limitations due to funding or program capacity often determine who will receive services (and when). Some services and benefits, however, must be provided to anyone who is eligible. These are known as entitlements.

Although many Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) programs are considered non-entitlements, individuals with developmental disabilities are often entitled to receive other services and benefits. In fact, most clients of DDA receive both entitlement and non-entitlement services.

Examples of entitlement programs include:

  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
    A monthly cash benefit for low-income individuals who are determined “aged, blind or disabled” by the federal Social Security Administration (SSA). Contact SSA to apply.
  • Apple Health and Apple Health for Kids
    Our state’s Medicaid health care benefit for children and adults who qualify for SSI, as well as those who meet financial eligibility for expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Visit to apply.
  • Community First Choice (CFC)
    A Medicaid program that includes personal care, assistive technology, skill acquisition and other benefits. CFC services can be requested through DDA (see opposite page for contact information) or Home and Community Services (for adults with disabilities and seniors). Find a local HCS office.
  • Basic Food
    Monthly food benefits to low income individuals and families. Apply online or your local Community Services Office.


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