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About DDS Children's Services
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About DDS Children’s Services
What is DDS Children’s Services?

Arkansas DDS Children’s Services is a program which provides care coordination and/or specialized medical care and rehabilitation for children with special health care needs whose families are partially or wholly unable to provide for such services and who meet the agency's criteria. DDS Children’s Services is located within the Division of Developmental Disabilities Services in the Arkansas Department of Human Services. DDS Children’s Services is financed by federal and state funds.

Definition of Children with Special Health Care Needs

Children with special health care needs are defined by the federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau as those children who have or are at risk for chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional conditions that require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required for children generally. DDS Children’s Services uses a less broad definition of children with chronic physical illnesses or disabling conditions.

What is the Purpose of DDS Children’s Services?

To locate children with special health care needs who may be in need of assistance in obtaining services.

To encourage and assist all families of children with special health needs to obtain the health services necessary to bring about the maximum physical, mental, social and educational development of their children.

To provide financial assistance and coordination of services to families needing comprehensive health care when other financial assistance is not available.

Complementing the above goals, there are six goals for DDS Children’s Services called "Healthy People 2010 Express Goals" - they are:

  1. Families of children with special health care needs will partner in decision making at all levels and will be satisfied with the services they receive.
  2. All children with special health care needs will receive coordinated, ongoing, comprehensive care within a medical home.
  3. All families of children with special health care needs will have adequate private and/or public insurance to pay for the services they need.
  4. All children will be screened early and continuously for special health care needs.
  5. Community-based service systems will be organized so families can use them easily.
  6. All youth with special health care needs will receive the services necessary to make transitions to all aspects of adult life, including adult health care, work and independence.

DDS Children’s Services Mission Statement

It is the mission of Arkansas DDS Children’s Services staff and Parent Advisory Council to see that every child with a special health care need (CSHCN) in Arkansas receives the services necessary to reach their greatest potential. In addition, it is our responsibility to see that families receive the support they need. This may be in the form of additional services required to adequately care for the special needs child or assist them in arranging appropriate alternate placement.

DDS Children’s Services Eligibility

Parents or legal guardians of any child under age 18 may apply for on-going services or a diagnostic evaluation for a potentially eligible condition. As funds allow, DDS Children’s Services may serve children 18 to 21 years of age. Due to financial limitations, DDS Children’s Services can only pay for medical services for children who are financially and medically eligible. Any child eligible for Medicaid must also apply for Medicaid under the appropriate category: SSI, TEFRA, ARKids A & B, etc. For more information about Medicaid, contact your county Department of Human Services Office or the Financial Counselors at Arkansas Children's Hospital. Click here for Medicaid website.

Services Available through DDS Children’s Services

Service Coordination (also called Case Management)

Diagnostic Evaluation


Medical & Surgical Treatment

Medications & Supplies

Rehabilitation Services

Some Medical Equipment

Medical Specialists

Special Formulas

Resource Library (501) 682-8220

DDS Children’s Services Newsletter

Respite (only for children on SSI or TEFRA) Click here for more information

Referrals to other families who have children with the same diagnosis as your child
(Call one of the DDS Children’s Services toll-free phone numbers below)

DDS Children’s Services Toll-Free Phone Numbers

Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 1-800-482-5850, extension 22277

How to Apply for DDS Children’s Services

Applications for DDS Children’s Services may be taken in your county Department of Human Services office, in DDS Children’s Services community-based offices, in the DDS Children’s Services Central Office in Little Rock, or by other trained personnel such as Financial Counselors at Arkansas Children's Hospital. When applying, please bring verification of income, such as current pay stubs. If you are self-employed, bring the most current year's income tax forms. All DDS Children’s Services community-based offices can be reached toll-free. Call the toll-free numbers above Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to get the toll-free number for any community-based office.

The pdf document below requires the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view or print.

Directory of DDS Children’s Services Community-Based Offices and Staff (pdf)

Some DDS Children’s Services Regulations

  1. A new application is required each year.
  2. All decisions regarding eligibility are determined by DDS Children’s Services administration.
  3. All services paid for by DDS Children’s Services must be pre-authorized by DDS Children’s Services registered nurse service coordinators.
  4. Medical insurance (if any) must be used to help defray cost of treatment and equipment.
  5. DDS Children’s Services cannot cover ARKids B co-pays.
  6. The applicant family must be evaluated for possible Medicaid coverage by county Human Services offices, or by hospitals taking DDS Children’s Services applications.
  7. A child may be eligible for both Medicaid and DDS Children’s Services. Each program has certain exclusions that the other program may provide.