Office of Licensing

OUR MISSION: To be the regulatory authority for DBHDS licensed service delivery system through effective oversight.

OUR VISION: The Office of Licensing will provide consistent, responsive, and reliable regulatory oversight to DBHDS licensed providers by supporting high quality services to meet the diverse needs of its clients.

CONNECT Provider Portal Resources and Information

Click below for help using the CONNECT Provider Portal or to report an issue.

CONNECT Help Instructions

If you are having trouble accessing or using the CONNECT Provider Portal, please click the Report an Issue button below.

Please allow up to two business days for the Help Desk staff to respond to your issue. 

Thank you for contacting the DBHDS Office of Licensing’s CONNECT Help Desk.

OL & CONNECT Spotlight

CONNECT Blast Newsletters


Job Aids

Training Videos

Help Desk Protocols

Exciting News:  The DBHDS Office of Licensing is dedicated to reducing any undue administrative burden to potential licensure applicants. Therefore, as of December 21, 2022, the OL has streamlined the licensing process for all “Priority” Services to ensure the services with the greatest need can be licensed within 90 days of the submission of a completed application. 

The Provider Portal Dashboard provides access to applicant information online and allows direct communication with the Office of Licensing staff regarding your application.

Click here to access the DBHDS CONNECT Provider Portal System

Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Home and community-based services (HCBS) provide opportunities for individuals to receive Medicaid waiver services in their own home or community rather than in institutions or other isolated settings.  Providers of group home, sponsored residential, supervised living, and group day services available in a Developmental Disabilities (DD) waiver must demonstrate full compliance with HCBS settings requirement in ALL settings in order to receive reimbursement for services. (42 CFR Part 430, 431).   

New providers are required to visit the HCBS Toolkit on the DMAS website to view resources and other information to help develop your HCBS policies.  Providers must also submit their HCBS policies to: for internal review prior to enrolling with Medicaid as a DD waiver provider and in order to receive reimbursement for services. 

For additional information, please visit the Department of Medical Assistance Services or click on the links below: 

 New Providers HCBS Overview: Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings Rule ( 

New Settings Guidance: CMS Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Regulations: Developmental Disability (DD) Waivers ( 

If you have additional questions related to HCBS please contact:


Use the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services Provider Search System to locate licensed providers by a variety of criteria.

Sign up to get news and updates delivered to your inbox from Office Of Licensing at the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services.


In order to view the waitlist – please click the DBHDS CONNECT PROVIDER PORTAL and choose VIEW APPLICATION WAITLIST.

Please note that the waitlist may not be processed in chronological order as state initiatives
may cause prioritization changes in the order applications are reviewed.


**Note: In order to download the waitlist, please allow pop ups.**




2023 Overhaul Regulatory Advisory Panel (RAP) Drafts


Each state agency must ensure that its regulations are reviewed at least once every four years through a “periodic review.” Agencies must then decide if the regulation will be amended, retained as is, or repealed. After conducting a periodic review of the Licensing Regulations, the agency filed a decision to amend the regulations. In 2019, a public comment forum and a RAP were held to discuss the initial draft of the ‘umbrella’ administrative chapter for all the licensing regulations, the General Chapter. Since reviewing the public comments received and the feedback provided by the first RAP, DBHDS published a revised draft of the General Chapter and also initial draft chapters for Residential, Center-based, Home/Noncenter-based, and Case Management services. A second RAP was convened across three meetings in the summer of 2023 (see more information below).

Planned Changes

Since the development of the draft General Chapter, the Office of Licensing has worked steadily on the “overhaul” of the Licensing Regulations and developed drafts for five new service-specific chapters. Note that current drafts incorporate the requirements of the current separate Chapter 46 (12VAC35-46), Regulations for Children’s Residential Facilities.

2023 RAP Membership and Public Comment

  • DBHDS invited individuals from state agency partners and providers around the state to have balanced representation on the panel.
  • Information from the three meetings (6/20, 6/27/ and 7/11) can be found here:
  • The draft chapters reviewed by the RAP are posted below. 

2023 Office of Licensing Overhaul Regulatory Advisory Panel

Previous Chapter Drafts Reviewed During the 2023 Overhaul RAP

(Note: These drafts are out of date as they are currently under revision based on comments.)

All other previous overhaul drafts and public comment forums since 2019 can be viewed here.

Next Steps
Upon receipt and consideration of comments to the initial draft of the Crisis chapter, revisions are expected. Then, a package of all six chapters will be prepared for consideration of regulatory action by the State Board of BHDS. Note that because the ‘overhaul’ is very large project combining two current regulations into a ‘five-legged stool with an umbrella chapter,’ all draft chapters must move forward together as one action.

Response to Periodic Review
Draft changes for the response to periodic review will be in a separate action and are not expected to take effect until two years after promulgation following the standard process, which takes an average of 18 months to two years to complete. These are only drafts at this time; no formal regulatory action has been filed.

Please keep in mind that once submitted to the State Board of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services for formal action, additional comment forums will be part of the official regulatory process. In other words, the RAP was not the last time to provide feedback.


Office of Licensing regulations 8

Pending Exempt Action

The State Board of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services approved this Exempt Action to amend 12VAC35-105 to incorporate federal mobile Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) requirements into Virginia regulations.  

Please note that the action will not be fully visible here until the Office of the Attorney General completes and certifies its review, a date that is unknown at this time.  

For more information about exempt regulatory actions, please visit the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall website.  

Public Comment Requested

There are no public comment forums at this time.



Policy and Form Templates Coming Soon!

These are not required templates; however, utilization of these templates will assist providers in achieving compliance with the regulatory requirements.




Recorded Trainings
Risk Management & Quality Improvement Strategies Training by the Center for Developmental Disabilities Evaluation & Research – Recorded Webinar (December 2020)
QI-RM-RCA Webinar Recording December 2021 (February 2022)

Root Cause Analysis – 12VAC35-105-160.E.1 and 160.E.2
• Sample(s)

• Training(s)

• FAQs

Risk Management – 12VAC35-105-520

• Sample(s)

•Tools and Templates


Care Concerns


Monitoring and Evaluating Service Quality – Quality Improvement – 12VAC35-105-620



• FAQs

Additional Trainings

Other Resources

A collection of guides, toolkits and training resources to help build quality improvement (QI) knowledge and skills has been posted to the DBHDS Office of Clinical Quality Management webpage: Office of Clinical Quality Management




Archived Documents


P.O. Box 1797
Richmond, VA 23218
Office (804) 786-1747

Fax (804) 692-0066

Office of Licensing Staff Contact Information

Licensing Regional Contacts

Incident Management Unit Regional Contacts

Specialized Investigation Unit Regional Contacts


The Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), located § 2.2-3700 et. seq. of the Code of Virginia, guarantees citizens of the Commonwealth and representatives of the media access to public records held by public bodies, public officials, and public employees.


The Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) values the citizens of Virginia and the feedback from the community at large and service providers. As such, DBHDS is dedicated to providing the best service possible to all stake holders. Information provided by citizens and employees helps with fulfilling DBHDS’ mission. If you choose to make a complaint, we will use a formal process to ensure that your complaint is addressed in a timely manner.

Please note, that the Office of Licensing will only investigate complaints that allege a violation of the Rules and Regulations for Licensed Providers by DBHDS or the Standards for the Regulation of Children’s Residential Facilities. While we will not investigate, the Office of Licensing may refer your allegation to the appropriate enforcement agency if the complaint does not allege a violation of the Licensing Regulations, but we believe that you have alleged a violation within their jurisdiction.

To file a complaint for the Office of Licensing through the CONNECT portal.

To report allegations of abuse, neglect and exploitation or other potential human rights violations involving a licensed provider,
please contact the Office of Human Rights directly. Please click here.