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Do you have a mental illness and currently live in a nursing facility? Would you like to live more independently and in the community? If you answered yes, there are several options for you.

Recovery Requires a Community

Recovery Requires a Community is a program run by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. It is specifically for people with mental illness or substance use disorders who live in nursing facilities. This program may be able to help you meet your goal to live more independently in the community.

How does Recovery Requires a Community help?

Recovery Requires a Community is supposed to fill any gaps in funding that are a barrier to your move back to the community. The program is flexible enough to cover any item or service you need to help sustain you in the community. It is also short-term and should be used as a last resort. Recovery Requires a Community can help you:

  • Pay for housing; 
  • Catch up on payments for utility bills or other types of financial obligations that can keep housing providers from renting to you; 
  • Get independent living skills training;
  • Find community support coaching; and
  • Access transportation.
How do I apply for Recovery Requires a Community?

To apply, you should submit a “Recovery Requires a Community Authorization for Release of Information” form to the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. You can find this form on page 8 of the Nursing Facility Community Transitions Resource Packet on You also can send an email to or call 614-644-0617 for more information.

HOME Choice

You should also apply for HOME Choice, which stands for “Helping Ohioans Move, Expanding Choice.” The Ohio Department of Medicaid runs this program. It is for people who are on Medicaid and who have been in an institutional setting for at least 90 days in a row and want to live in the community. An institutional setting can be a nursing facility, an intermediate care facility for people with intellectual disabilities, a hospital, or a residential treatment facility.

How can HOME Choice help?

If you are enrolled in HOME Choice, you get to choose a transition coordinator. This person will help you do things like find housing (an apartment, for example) or access the services you may need in the community. You also get up to $2,000 to help make the transition successful. You can use this money to pay for things like new furniture, a security deposit, start-up groceries or moving expenses.

You do not need to apply for or be eligible for HOME Choice to take advantage of Recovery Requires a Community. Most people do use both programs, though, and the transition will likely be faster and more sustainable if you do, too.

How do I apply for HOME Choice?

You can call the Ohio Department of Medicaid at 888-221-1560 or email to ask for an application.

What do I do if I run into problems trying to use these programs or if I have questions?

For any questions, concerns or problems with the Recovery Requires a Community or HOME Choice programs, please contact the Disability Rights Ohio intake department at 800-282-9181 and select option 2.

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