34 CFR 371.43 - What other special conditions apply to this program?
(a) Any American Indian with disabilities who is eligible for services under this program but who wishes to be provided services by the DSU must be referred to the DSU for such services.
(b) Preference in employment in connection with the provision of vocational rehabilitation services under this section must be given to American Indians, with a special priority being given to American Indians with disabilities.
(c) The provisions of sections 5, 6, 7, and 102(a) of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act also apply under this program ( 25 U.S.C. 450c, 450d, 450e, and 450f(a)). These provisions relate to grant reporting and audit requirements, maintenance of records, access to records, availability of required reports and information to Indian people served or represented, repayment of unexpended Federal funds, criminal activities involving grants, penalties, wage and labor standards, preference requirements for American Indians in the conduct and administration of the grant, and requirements affecting requests of tribal organizations to enter into contracts. For purposes of applying these requirements to this program, the Secretary carries out those responsibilities assigned to the Secretary of Interior.
(d) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit must develop and maintain written policies regarding the provision of vocational rehabilitation services that ensure that the provision of services is based on the vocational rehabilitation needs of each individual as identified in that individual's IPE and is consistent with the individual's informed choice. The written policies may not establish any arbitrary limits on the nature and scope of vocational rehabilitation services to be provided to the individual to achieve an employment outcome. The policies must be developed in accordance with the following provisions:
(i) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may establish a preference for on- or near-reservation services, provided that the preference does not effectively deny an individual a necessary service. If the individual chooses an equivalent off-reservation service at a higher cost than an available on- or near-reservation service, the Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit is not responsible for those costs in excess of the cost of the on- or near-reservation service, if either service would meet the individual's rehabilitation needs.
(ii) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may not establish policies that effectively prohibit the provision of off-reservation services.
(2)Payment for services (i) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit must establish and maintain written policies to govern the rates of payment for all purchased vocational rehabilitation services.
(ii) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may establish a fee schedule designed to ensure the program pays a reasonable cost for each service, as long as the fee schedule -
(A) Is not so low as effectively to deny an individual a necessary service; and
(B) permits exceptions so that individual needs can be addressed.
(C) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may not place absolute dollar limits on the amount it will pay for specific service categories or on the total services provided to an individual.
(3)Duration of services (i) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may establish reasonable time periods for the provision of services provided that the time periods -
(A) Are not so short as effectively to deny an individual a necessary service; and
(B) Permit exceptions so that individual needs can be addressed.
(ii) The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may not place time limits on the provision of specific services or on the provision of services to an individual. The duration of each service needed by an individual must be determined on the basis of that individual's needs and reflected in that individual's individualized plan for employment.
(4)Authorization of services. The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit must establish policies related to the timely authorization of services.
(e)Informed choice. Each individual who is an applicant for or eligible to receive vocational rehabilitation services must be afforded the opportunity to exercise informed choice throughout the vocational rehabilitation process carried out under programs funded under this part. The Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit must develop and maintain written policies and procedures that require it -
(1) To inform each applicant and eligible individual, through appropriate modes of communication, about the availability of, and opportunities to exercise, informed choice, including the availability of support services for individuals with cognitive or other disabilities who require assistance in exercising informed choice, throughout the vocational rehabilitation process;
(2) To assist applicants and eligible individuals in exercising informed choice in decisions related to the provision of assessment services;
(3) To develop and implement flexible procurement policies and methods that facilitate the provision of vocational rehabilitation services, and that afford eligible individuals meaningful choices among the methods used to procure vocational rehabilitation services;
(4) To provide or assist eligible individuals in acquiring information that enables them to exercise informed choice in the development of their IPEs and selection of -
(i) The employment outcome;
(ii) The specific vocational rehabilitation services needed to achieve the employment outcome;
(iii) The entity that will provide the services;
(iv) The employment setting and the settings in which the services will be provided; and
(v) The methods available for procuring the services; and
(5) To ensure that the availability and scope of informed choice is consistent with the obligations of the Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit.
(6) Information and assistance in the selection of vocational rehabilitation services and service providers: In assisting an applicant and eligible individual in exercising informed choice during the assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs and during development of the IPE, the Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit must provide the individual or the individual's representative, or assist the individual or the individual's representative in acquiring, information necessary to make an informed choice about the specific vocational rehabilitation services, including the providers of those services, that are needed to achieve the individual's employment outcome. This information must include, at a minimum, information relating to the -
(i) Cost, accessibility, and duration of potential services;
(ii) Consumer satisfaction with those services to the extent that information relating to consumer satisfaction is available;
(iii) Qualifications of potential service providers;
(iv) Types of services offered by the potential providers;
(v) Degree to which services are provided in integrated settings; and
(vi) Outcomes achieved by individuals working with service providers, to the extent that such information is available.
(7) Methods or sources of information: In providing or assisting the individual or the individual's representative in acquiring the information required under paragraph (c) of this section, the Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation unit may use, but is not limited to, the following methods or sources of information:
(i) Lists of services and service providers.
(ii) Periodic consumer satisfaction surveys and reports.
(iii) Referrals to other consumers, consumer groups, or disability advisory councils qualified to discuss the services or service providers.
(iv) Relevant accreditation, certification, or other information relating to the qualifications of service providers.
(v) Opportunities for individuals to visit or experience various work and service provider settings.