A waiver is an extra set of Health First Colorado (Colorado's Medicaid Program) benefits that you could qualify for in certain cases. These benefits can help you remain in your home and community. Waivers have extra program rules and some programs may have waitlists.
The Spinal Cord Injury Waiver is expanding and changing its name!
Effective July 1, 2022, all services on the Complementary and Integrative Health (CIH) waiver (formerly SCI Waiver) will be available statewide and to persons living with a spinal cord injury (traumatic or nontraumatic), multiple sclerosis, brain injury, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, or cerebral palsy with the inability for independent ambulation over the age of 18. The name of the waiver has also changed to the Complementary and Integrative Health (CIH) waiver.
The Complementary and Integrative Health Waiver provides acupuncture, chiropractic, and massage therapy in addition to all HCBS services listed below. There is no waitlist for this waiver.
In 2025, the second iteration of an independent evaluation will be presented to the State legislature that measures the health outcomes, quality of life, and cost expenditures for waiver participants receiving complementary and integrative health services which includes, acupuncture, massage therapy, and chiropractic services through the CIH waiver. This report will help the legislature determine any changes to the availability of complementary and integrative health services in the future.
Individuals who receive services through the CIH waiver are also eligible for all Health First Colorado covered services as long as they are not duplicative.
Complementary and Integrative Health Services Guide - September 2018
The Home and Community-Based Services Complementary and Integrative Health waiver helps individuals living with a spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, a brain injury, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, or cerebral palsy with the inability for independent ambulation.
To qualify for the CIH waiver, you must:
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Have a qualifying condition of a spinal cord injury (traumatic or nontraumatic), multiple sclerosis, brain injury, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, or cerebral palsy with the inability for independent ambulation directly resulting from one of these conditions as defined by broad diagnoses related to each condition within the most current version of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) at the time of assessment.
- Have been determined to have an inability for independent ambulation resulting from the qualifying condition as identified by the case manager through the assessment process. The inability for independent ambulation for the HCBS-CIH waiver means:
The individual does not walk, and requires use of a wheelchair or scooter in all settings, whether or not they can operate the wheelchair or scooter safely, on their own, OR;
The individual does walk, but requires use of a walker or cane in all settings, whether or not they can use the walker or cane safely, on their own, OR;
The individual does walk, but requires “touch” or “stand-by” assistance to ambulate safely in all settings.
- Have been determined to be financially eligible
- If you do not meet the financial requirements, you may be eligible through the Health First Colorado Buy-In Program for Working Adults with Disabilities.
- Have been determined to need long-term services and supports as you would receive in a nursing home or a hospital.
Benefits and Services
How to Apply
If you are already enrolled in Health First Colorado (Colorado's Medicaid Program), contact your local Single Entry Point (SEP) to start the waiver application process.
If you are NOT yet enrolled in Health First Colorado, apply now.
CIH Waiver Frequently Asked Questions
1. What if I am currently on the Home and Community-Based Services Elderly Blind and Disabled waiver? Can I transfer over to the CIH waiver?
Yes. Please contact your case manager to let them know you are interested in the CIH waiver. If you meet the eligibility requirements for the CIH waiver, your case manager will discuss with you the specific transfer requirements for their case management agency.
2. What does the transfer process look like?
After you have contacted your case manager and expressed an interest in enrolling on the CIH waiver, your case manager will mail you a Voluntary Withdrawal Form. This form states that you are requesting to withdraw from the current waiver you are enrolled in and want to be transferred to the CIH Waiver. Please sign and return the Voluntary Withdrawal Form as soon as possible. Your case manager will also send your physician a Physician Medical Information Page (PMIP) form to verify your qualifying condition.
3. Do I need to have another assessment done by my case manager?
After your case manager receives both the Voluntary Withdrawal Form and Physician Medical Information Page, they will contact you to discuss any changes in your needs since your last assessment. Your case manager will be able to confirm this over the phone if your last assessment was completed within the past six months. If you have not had an assessment in the last six months, your case manager will need to schedule a new face-to-face assessment to verify your needs.
Currently, there are two providers with 2 locations that provide these services:
866 E.78th Avenue
Denver, CO 80229
Chanda Center for Health (Lakewood)
1630 Carr Street
Lakewood, CO 80214
*Contact your case manager for information and availability for these providers and any new providers that may become available.