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An independent provider is a self-employed person who directly provides services to people with developmental disabilities. They cannot employ someone else to provide services on their behalf.


Independent providers must be at least 18 years old, have a valid Social Security number, and one of the following forms of identification:

  • State of Ohio identification
  • valid driver license
  • other government-issued photo identification

Independent providers must have a high school diploma or GED and be able to read, write, and understand English at a level sufficient to comply with all requirements set forth in administrative rules governing the services provided.

Independent providers must also hold a valid American Red Cross or equivalent certification in first aid and CPR, including an in-person skills assessment.

Independent providers are not employees of the State of Ohio or employees of the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities.

Before You Apply

Before submitting an application for certification as an independent provider, applicants must have successfully completed all training as defined in 5123-2-09 and its related appendices. The Independent Provider Initial Training course is available on DODD MyLearning.

Additional training requirements may apply for some services.

Independent Provider Certification Process

Once You’ve Been Certified by the DODD

Once you have received approval by DODD you will receive a 7 digit Contract Number.  This Contract Number is unique to you.  Providers have the option to submit their DODD confirmation letter in person to the receptionist at Whipple Dale Center located at 2950 Whipple Ave NW, Canton, 44708. Providers may choose to mail the confirmation letter, but the quickest and fastest method is to send via email to CertificationOrientation@starkdd.org

What to Expect Next

We will be in contact with you to register for Provider Orientation. Once you attend orientation, you will gain access to Stark DD Referrals for individuals looking for services. Stark DD uses Brittco to generate referrals that providers may respond to for scheduling Free Choice of Provider interviews.