SPOA (Single Point of Access)

SPOA Virtual Office
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What is the Children’s Single Point of Access (SPOA)?

SPOA was implemented to expand each county’s existing community based mental health system, and make it a more collaborative system.  The Children’s SPOA is established under the Local Government Unit (LGU) to ensure appropriate access to services, prioritize based on need, and to ensure accountability between systems and providers. The SPOA applications are reviewed by the SPOA committee to determine the most appropriate services available to the individual. It can also assist in identifying and developing strategies for complex behaviors and situations. The SPOA Committee is developed in collaboration with our local Department of Social Services, Coordinated Children’s Services Initiative (CCSI), Cortland County Mental Health, Family and Children Counseling Services, Catholic Charities of Cortland, Hillside Children and Family Services, Children’s Home of Wyoming Conference, Cortland County School representatives, Franziska Racker Centers, and the Probation Department.

How does the Children’s Single Point of Access (SPOA) work?

Individuals can be referred to SPOA using the Cortland County Joint Services Referral Form or the Universal SPOA Referral by hospitals, service providers, family members, or legal guardians.  The referral is sent to Cortland County Mental Health for review and discussion by the SPOA Committee.  Through this process, the committee utilizes guidance from the Department of Health and the Office of Mental Health to determine appropriateness criteria and the appropriate level of care based on the information provided. The SPOA Committee then will make a recommendation for services.   

What services are available through the Children’s Single Point of Access (SPOA)?

1.)   Non-Medicaid Care Management

This program is for children and youth ages 5 to 18 that have a diagnosis aligned with Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED), and that do not meet the guidelines to receive Medicaid health insurance. In Cortland County, Catholic Charities of Cortland (www.ccocc.org) is the provider of these services.

2.)   Health Home Care Management

Through Health Home Care Management, an individual is assigned a care manager to assist and guide an individualized comprehensive plan of care that includes social/emotional well-being, physical health, and behavioral health supports. The Children’s Health Home Care Management is designed for children from birth to age 18. Families have choice as to which Care Management agency (CMA) they would like to work with, and a parent partner (a parent with lived experience) is available to assist with this process.

3.)   Home and Community Based Waiver Services (HCBS)

This level of care is designated for children and youth ages 5 to 17 that have complex needs not being met through the Health Home Care Management program.  The Home and Community Based Waiver Services provide respite, family support services, crisis response, and intensive in home services. 

4.)   Residential Treatment Facility (RTF)

Although it is not necessary, it is recommended that families interested in an RTF placement for their child go through the SPOA committee.  This SPOA committee can provide letters of support for the referral or provide suggestions for other services in the community that can be utilized.  For more information on this process click on the link below.


Cortland County Children’s Single Point of Access (SPOA) can also assist with the following services, although it is not necessary to go through SPOA to obtain them.

1.)   Family Support Services (FFS)


2.)   Coordinated Children’s Services Initiative (CCSI):


3.)   Department of Social Services Preventive Services:


 4.) Liberty Resources Placement Diversion


Adult SPOA services also available: 

  • Call for more information