Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services
State Board of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services

General Notice
INITIAL DRAFT: NEW Center-Based Service Specific Chapter (109) for 12VAC35-105, Rules and Regulations for Licensing Providers by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services
Date Posted: 7/15/2022
Expiration Date: 9/30/2022
Submitted to Registrar for publication: YES
46 Day Comment Forum closed. Began on 8/15/2022 and ended 9/30/2022   [37 comments]

TO:                 Providers Licensed by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services


FROM:            Jae Benz

Director, Office of Licensing


SUBJECT:     Response to Periodic Review: ‘Overhaul’ of Licensing Regulations to Service

Specific Chapters - Initial DRAFTS of ‘Center-Based Chapter’ and ‘Case Management Chapter’


DATE:            July 15, 2022


Cc:                  Emily Bowles, Associate Director, Office of Licensing

Veronica Davis, Associate Director, Office of Licensing

Dev Nair, Assistant Commissioner, QAGR Division

Susan Puglisi, Regulatory Research Specialist, Office of Regulatory Affairs

Ruth Anne Walker, Director, Office of Regulatory Affairs



In late 2017, the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) conducted a periodic review of the Rules and Regulations for Licensing Providers by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services [12VAC35-105] (“Licensing Regulations”).  At the completion of that review, the department decided amendments to the regulations were needed.  After researching other states and other agencies within Virginia, the Office of Licensing decided to split the regulations into several separate regulatory chapters, revising both the structure and the content.


In response to significant public comment, the structure will include one overarching ‘General Chapter’ that will apply to all providers and five ‘service specific’ chapters: Residential, Home/Non-Center Based, Center-Based, Case Management, and Crisis.  Please see the attached listing of the chapters for more information.  This methodology allows DBHDS to write more detailed service specific regulations that will assist providers in understanding exactly which regulatory provisions apply to their services.


In late 2019, the Office of Licensing published an initial draft of the General Chapter for public comment and also held two regulatory advisory panel (RAP) meetings to receive technical assistance on the content of that initial draft.  Since reviewing the public comments received and the feedback provided by the RAP, DBHDS published in 2021 a revised draft of the General Chapter and also initial drafts of a Residential Chapter and a Home/Non-Center Based Chapter.


Drafts for Comment

DBHDS is releasing initial drafts of the Center-Based and the Case Management chapters for public comment. 


There is a public comment forum for each of the two draft chapters open from August 15 – September 30, 2022.  All are accessible here,  The link to the initial draft of the Center-Based Chapter is pasted below.  Please feel free to provide your feedback via the public comment forums for any of the draft chapters on Town Hall or by emailing Susan Puglisi, Regulatory Research Specialist, DBHDS Office of Regulatory Affairs, at  Public comments may also be submitted by fax (804) 371-4609, or by hard copy mail to: Attn: Susan Puglisi, DBHDS, Jefferson Building, Room 411, 1220 Bank St., Richmond, VA 23219.  Should you have any questions you can direct them to Susan Puglisi, or Ruth Anne Walker, Director of the Office of Regulatory Affairs at


Future Drafts

Work continues on the last of the newly structured chapter, the initial draft Crisis Chapter, and continued revisions to previously published chapters.


Response to Periodic Review versus Behavioral Health Redesign

It is important to distinguish this drafting effort of the response to periodic review of the Licensing Regulations from other current discussions and regulatory actions regarding only behavioral health redesign (Project BRAVO). 

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 2024 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.

Behavioral Health Redesign (Project BRAVO):  The current effective Licensing Regulations will be the vehicle for any required department regulatory changes that come from the behavioral health redesign, in effect through emergency regulations authorized by the General Assembly. 


List of Drafts in Progress


INITIAL DRAFT – Services by Chapter


Center-Based Chapter:

  • Center-based day support service
  • Mental health intensive outpatient service
  • Mental health outpatient service
  • Mental health partial hospitalization
  • Substance abuse partial hospitalization
  • Psychosocial rehabilitation service
  • Substance abuse intensive outpatient
  • Substance abuse outpatient
  • Center based therapeutic day treatment for children and adolescents
  • Center based respite service
  • Medication assisted opioid treatment programs


Case Management Chapter:

  • Case management



Crisis Chapter:


  • 23 Hour Crisis stabilization
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Emergency services
  • Community based crisis stabilization
  • Crisis stabilization unit
  • Residential crisis stabilization
  • Non-residential crisis stabilization


Link to Initial Draft NEW Center-Based Chapter (109):


Both drafts and this memo are posted to:


Contact Information
Name / Title: Susan H. Puglisi  / Regulatory Research Specialist
Address: DBHDS Office of Regulatory Affairs
1220 Bank Street, Room 411
Richmond, 23219
Email Address:
Telephone: (804)371-8043    FAX: (804)371-4609    TDD: (804)371-8977