Office of Human Rights
The Office of Human Rights (OHR), within the AHCCCS Division of Community Advocacy and Intergovernmental Relations, is established under Arizona Administrative Code R9-21-104 and responsible for providing assistance to AHCCCS members living with Serious Mental Illness. The OHR works within the Medicaid agency to promote the rights of members and ensure access to entitled services under Arizona’s Medicaid program. The OHR is directly responsible for ensuring that members who are identified as in need of Special Assistance are promptly identified and formally assigned a designated representative to assist them in participating in treatment planning, discharge planning, the SMI appeal, grievance and investigation processes. Statewide, OHR currently employs 16 Advocates, one Lead Advocate for Maricopa County, one Lead Advocate for greater Arizona (GSA 7&8), one Data and Policy Manager, one Conflict Advocate, and one Advocacy Administrator
Providing advocacy to individuals with a Serious Mental Illness (SMI) to help them understand, protect and exercise their rights, facilitate self-advocacy through education and obtain access to behavioral health services in the public behavioral health system in Arizona.
AHCCCS Member Assistance
OHR is available to provide technical assistance to all SMI members in Arizona. Currently, state-employed advocates are assigned to approximately 2 percent of the SMI population through the Special Assistance identification and assignment process. An additional 5 percent are represented by court appointed guardians or natural supports who also receive ongoing support from OHR as needed. The OHR advocates work with the members and families to promote self-advocacy and behavioral health education. The advocate’s goal is to empower the member and/or the member’s natural support to navigate the behavioral health system independently.
Educational and Self-advocacy Resources
- The Role of OHR for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (May 2023)
- The ISP an Why it Matters (April 2023)
- Provider Case Management for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (March 2023)
- The Power of Collaboration and Advocacy for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (December 2022)
- What is the Office of Human Rights?
- The ISP and Why it Matters for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (August 2022)
- Court-Ordered Evaluation and Treatment (July 2022)
- Rights of Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (August 2022, February 2023)
- The Inpatient Treatment and Discharge Planning Process for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (September 2022)
- The Grievance and Appeal Process for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness (October 2022)
- Why Assess for Special Assistance for Individuals Living with a Serious Mental Illness
- OHR Educational Handout English | Spanish
- OHR Special Assistance Determination
Assessment & Re-Assessment for Special Assistance Determination
- OHR Special Assistance FAQ English | Spanish
- OHR SMI Individual Service Planning English | Spanish
- OHR SMI Rights Education English | Spanish
- OHR SMI Inpatient Rights Education English | Spanish