Fields under the 'Disabling Conditions and Barriers' heading are intended to indicate whether clients have any disabling special needs which contribute to their experience of homelessness or may be a factor in housing.

Whereas the 'Disabling Conditions' field (located below the specific conditions fields) is intended to indicate whether or not clients have a disabling condition as defined by HUD and is used with other information to identify whether a client meets the criteria for chronic homelessness.

Data Collection Instructions

In separate fields, indicate:

  1. If each client has the indicated disability; and
  2. If there is an indication that the disability is expected to be of long-continued and indefinite duration and substantially impair the client's ability to live independently.

Individual Disability records created at project start, update, and project exit are to reflect the information as of the date of each phase of data collection. Disability update records should be created at any time during a project stay if a client's disability status changes. 'Information Date' for those records must reflect the date of project start, update, and the date of project exit, respectively. If a client's disability status was recorded incorrectly at entry, update, or exit, correct the existing record rather than creating a new update record.

Unless the project funder requires documentation for record-keeping purposes, clients are not required to provide documentation of the disability, nor does entering the information in the HMIS constitute a “diagnosis” by the worker who did the data collection or recording.

If the disability is present and is expected to be of long-continued and indefinite duration, the corresponding element 'Disabling Condition' should also be ‘Yes.'

It is acceptable for a client to answer 'Yes' to having a disabling barrier (Physical Disability, Developmental Disability, Chronic Health Condition, HIV-AIDS, Mental Health Disorder, or Substance Use Disorder), and also answer 'No,' that the disability is not expected to be of long, continued, and indefinite duration and substantially impair the ability to live independently, although a disability of such type may not qualify clients for programs meant for severely disabled people and does not indicate a 'Disabling Condition' according to HUD.

More Resources

For more detailed and the most up-to-date information regarding HUD required HMIS Program Data Elements, please find the Data Standards Manual here: HMIS Data Standards - HUD Exchange.

Contact Us

If you need help, or wish to offer suggestions or feedback, please contact the Cincinnati/Hamilton County HMIS support team at HMISsupport@end-homelessness.org or by calling 513-263-2790 9:00am - 3:00pm Monday-Friday (excluding holidays).

When contacting HMIS Support, please do not include any Personal Identifiable Information (PII) such as names, social security numbers, birth dates, etc. Please only use the Clarity Unique Identifier found on the Clarity client profile page.