The NMDVR’s rehabilitation process helps people with disabilities prepare for, obtain, keep, or regain suitable employment.
If eligible, vocational rehabilitation (VR) services will be provided to assist you in finding suitable employment in a career of your choice. Depending on the services needed, the rehabilitation process can last anywhere from a few months to several years.
The rehabilitation process consists of the following:
Upon completion of referral, a VR team member will contact you and provide a brief overview of the VR process. An initial intake appointment will be scheduled, and you will be advised of the required documentation to bring for your appointment. You will also be introduced to DVR’s orientation video (en Espanol.). In addition, for SSI/SSDI recipients, you will be provided information on the Ticket to Work program. Lastly, you will be scheduled to meet with a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC), where you receive answers to any questions you may have about getting started on your VR journey.
During the initial intake, you will determine if you wish to apply for VR Services. If you wish to continue, a case will be created by your VRC. This session will include:
- An overview of your Rights and Responsibilities;
- Complete an application for services which includes:
- Collecting demographic information;
- Information regarding diagnosed disabilities;
- Financial information;
- Educational and work history; and
- Your goals.
- Determining the next steps towards eligibility.
Further, the VR Team will be working to collect and assess information regarding your disabilities to move towards an eligibility determination on your case.
To be eligible for the DVR program, the following criteria must be met:
- You must have a physical or mental impairment which creates a barrier to getting or keeping a job;
- You must be able to work and have a desire to work; and
- You must require VR services to obtain or maintain employment.
NMDVR has 60 days to determine eligibility of your case. Once the necessary documentation, assessment and review of the case has been completed you VRC will make an eligibility determination. If you are eligible, your case then moves to eligible status.
A comprehensive assessment will be conducted to determine the goals, objectives, nature, and scope of VR services to be included in the IPE. After the assessment is complete, you will be given a list of your options in developing the IPE.
If you are determined eligible for services, you and your counselor will develop and follow an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). The IPE is the plan of services and activities that can reasonably be expected to lead to an employment outcome.
You and your counselor will review the IPE, at least once a year, to ensure it is still the best plan for you; however, you may request a review of your IPE at any time. If your needs change while you are in rehabilitation, your IPE may be amended.
Depending on your specific needs, different types of training and services may be provided for you to obtain suitable employment. The available training and services are defined below but not limited to:
- Evaluations that may include medical, psychological, vocation, and other specialist exams are required;
- School-to-Work transition planning;
- Vocational and Post-Secondary Education Training;
- Counseling and Guidance;
- Medical and Psychological treatment;
- Rehabilitation Engineering / Assistive Technology services;
- Help with obtaining equipment and services needed for employment;
- Job Training / Coaching / Placement and support;
- Supported Employment (SE);
- Job seeking skills training;
- Job search;
- When you are ready to enter employment, you may be provided job-seeking skills. This may include instructions on how to complete an application; develop a resume; prepare for an interview; and conduct a job search. DVR also maintains contact with employers to refer qualified clients for employment.
- Independent living services;
- Post-employment services; and
- Other services needed to help or maintain employment.
Each case is reviewed on an individual basis; therefore, not all training and services listed may be appropriate in helping you obtain suitable employment.
If you have been out of work for a long time, you may receive training to help you become adjusted to the demands of the job.
If reasonable accommodations are needed to perform the essential functions of your job, DVR may provide advice or assistance to you and your employer.
The only services DVR can provide are those services which are listed on an approved IPE or subsequent approved amendments. The only exception to this is a diagnostic evaluation which may be provided when authorized by your VRC.
After you have obtained employment, it is recommended you keep in contact with your counselor for advice or assistance. Generally, your case will be closed after completing 90 consecutive days of employment.
After your case has been closed, if your situation changes in a way and you are unable to maintain suitable employment, you may contact DVR for further employment assistance. You may be eligible for post-employment services (PES) to help you retain employment or search for other employment. In some cases, clients are asked to reapply for VR services, and a new eligibility determination is made.