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Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities(IDD)

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 Jim KellyHi, my name is Jim Kelly.  I serve as the Coordinator of programs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities for the Detroit Wayne Community Mental Health Authority.  I’ve had a varied career working with people with disabilities and their families in a number of settings, ranging from advocacy organizations to agencies providing employment and residential support services.  During my career, I’ve also worked with people experiencing serious and persistent mental illness as well as those who were homeless.

As part of the Clinical Practice team, I oversee the development, implementation and monitoring of IDD services.  In  addition,  I  assists  in  the  development and  delivery  of  technical  assistance,  practice  innovation,  education  strategies  and  policy  development  for our provider network and the community at large.

I received my bachelor’s degree from University of Michigan and my master’s degree from Wayne State University where I studied Rehabilitation and Community Inclusion and specialized in supportive employment.  I am a State of Michigan licensed professional counselor.

Please feel free to browse our website or contact me for additional information or assistance.  I may be contacted at

Frequently Asked Questions  (FAQs)

What are Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities?

Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) are a group of conditions due to an impairment in physical, learning, language, or behavior areas that start in childhood. About one in six children in the U.S. have one or more developmental disabilities or other developmental delays.


What are some examples of I/DD?
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum, Disorders, Fragile X Syndrome, Hearing Loss, Intellectual Disability, Jaundice/Kernicterus, Muscular Dystrophy, Tourette Syndrome, Vision Impairment.


What is the legal definition of I/DD?
The Michigan Mental Health Code defines developmental disability as either of the following:
A. If applied to an individual older than 5 years of age, a severe, chronic condition that meets all of the following requirements:
  • Is attributable to a mental or physical impairment or a combination of mental and physical impairments.
  • Is manifested before the individual is 22 years old.
  • Is likely to continue indefinitely.
  • Results in substantial functional limitations in 3 or more of    the following areas of major life activity:
    • Self-care.
    • Receptive and expressive language.
    • Learning.
    • Mobility.
    • Self-direction.
    • Capacity for independent living.
    • Economic self-sufficiency.
  • Reflects the individual's need for a combination and sequence of special, interdisciplinary, or generic care, treatment, or other services that are of lifelong or extended duration and are individually planned and coordinated. 

B. If applied to a minor from birth to 5 years of age, a substantial developmental delay or a specific congenital or acquired condition with a high probability of resulting in developmental disability as defined in subdivision (A) if services are not provided.

What causes developmental disabilities?
Most developmental disabilities are thought to be caused by a complex mix of factors. These factors include:
  • genetics;
  • parental health and behaviors (such as smoking and drinking) during pregnancy;
  • complications during birth;
  • infections the mother might have during pregnancy or the baby might have very early in life;
  • exposure of the mother or child to high levels of environmental toxins, such as lead.
  • For some developmental disabilities, such as fetal alcohol syndrome, which is caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy, we know the cause. However, for most, we do not fully understand the cause.


What services are offered?
Supports and services, as deemed medically necessary, are individualized for each person depending on his or her needs as identified through their person-centered plan.  Some examples include…
  • Adult Day Program                                   
  • Assessment
  • Assistive Technology
  • Case Management
  • Chore Services
  • Community Living Supports (CLS)
  • Crisis Interventions
  • Family Support and Training
  • Fiscal Intermediary Service
  • Home-based Services
  • Housing Assistance
  • Mental Health Therapy and Counseling for Adults
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Out-of-Home Non-Vocational Supports and Services
  • Peer-Delivered and Peer Specialist Services
  • Physical Therapy
  • Prevocational Services
  • Respite Care Services
  • Skill-Building Assistance
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Supported/Integrated Employment Services
  • Supports Coordination
  • Treatment Planning
  • Vocational Services

If I or someone I know has I/DD, what does the service process look like?

IDD service process flow chart.PNG

Useful Links

Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council
Michigan Supports Intensity Scale (SIS) Information
Michigan Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities Administration
The Arc Michigan
UCP (United Cerebral Palsy) of Detroit
Developmental Disabilities Institute at Wayne State
Michigan Alliance for Families
The Center for Self-Determination
For further information, consult your primary care
provider and contact our Access Center at

family presenting boy with birthday cupcake