CDPAP Consumer and CDPAP Personal Assistant
CDPAP consumer with her personal assistant. Stock photo – people depicted are models.

Consider the following scenario:

Sally Bronson was a dedicated mother who had worked hard her whole life to provide for her family. Now in her late-70’s, she suffered from a number of health complications that caused her to require help with activities of daily living. She also required daily insulin shots for her diabetes. Her daughter, Michelle, was there as often as possible, but she herself had to work to support her own family.

Michelle wanted to get her mother a home attendant, but she knew that her mother would be reluctant to let a stranger into her home. Additionally, even if she could get her mother to accept a home attendant, the home attendant would not be allowed to administer the daily insulin shots that her mother required. Then Michelle discovered the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program (CDPAP).

Under the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program, Michelle was able to get paid to take care of her mother. Since personal assistants are allowed to administer skilled services, Michelle was able to give her mother the daily insulin shots. This allowed Michelle to give her mother the kind of care that only a daughter can provide, without compromising on her responsibilities to her own family.

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What is CDPAP?

CDPAP is a Medicaid program that allows consumers that need long-term home care to direct their own care. Consumers, or their representatives, recruit their own personal assistants who they train and direct.

Who is eligible to join CDPAP?

Consumers must require assistance with activities of daily living or skilled care, have a stable medical condition, and be self directing or have a designated representative that is willing and able to direct care as per the program’s requirements. Since CDPAP is a Medicaid sponsored program, it is only available to consumers that are eligible for Medicaid.

Who can provide care under CDPAP? May family members serve as the personal assistant?

Most people, including children, can serve as personal assistants and get paid to provide care under CDPAP. Spouses may not provide care under CDPAP.

Do personal assistants need a special license or certification to provide care under CDPAP?

Personal assistants must be legally allowed to work. They do not need a special license or certification to provide care under the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program.

What kind of services are personal assistants able to administer under CDPAP?

Under CDPAP, personal assistants are able to provide both custodial and skilled services. This includes many skilled services that a home health aide may not provide, such as wound care, giving insulin shots, and suctioning tracheostomies.

How does someone enroll in CDPAP?

Most consumers in New York City and Nassau County must first enroll in a Medicaid Managed Care plan. Dual eligible consumers (meaning they have both Medicare and Medicaid) must enroll in a Managed Long-Term Care (MLTC) plan. Consumers with just Medicaid must be enrolled in a mainstream managed Medicaid plan. In both cases, the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program is administered by the plan. Consumers should notify their plan that they would like to enroll in CDPAP. We provide free assistance enrolling in CDPAP. Please call us if you would like help – 718-838-3838.

How does the personal assistant get paid under CDPAP?

Personal assistants are paid through fiscal intermediaries (FI) that contract with the plans that administer the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program.

Pros and Cons of CDPAP vs Traditional Home Care

The following are some Pros and Cons to consider for CDPAP vs traditional home care:

Pros

  • Close relatives such as children can get paid to provide care.
  • Personal assistants are not required to have special certification or licensing. While this isn’t inherently positive, it can make it easier for someone to become a personal assistant.
  • Personal assistants can administer skilled services such as wound care, giving insulin shots, and suctioning tracheostomies.

Cons

  • A personal assistant recruited by the patient may not have received any formal training. As such, the assistant must be trained by the patient and/or family.
  • If the personal assistant is not available for a period of time, the consumer (i.e. the patient) or their representative must recruit and hire their own replacement.
  • Home health care agencies will generally conduct background checks before hiring a home attendant. If a CDPAP consumer would want to conduct a background check, they would have to do it on their own.

We provide free help with enrolling in CDPAP. If you would like assistance for yourself, a loved one, or a client, please give us a call. Call Us Now! 718-838-3838