Exploring Caregiver Options – The CDPAP allows U.S. seniors to choose their own caregivers

Finding the right caregiver to help you get through your senior years comfortably is difficult because you don’t know what to look for. Different types of caregivers have varying degrees of credentials, but you don’t …


Finding the right caregiver to help you get through your senior years comfortably is difficult because you don’t know what to look for. Different types of caregivers have varying degrees of credentials, but you don’t know what type you need or how to pay for assistance services.

This blog aims to provide you with all the answers to help you find a compassionate caregiver who offers the best services. But before exploring the various types of home care aide, you can select from, consider the care logistics you want and how long you need the assistant’s support. A New York State Medicaid program known as the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program enables approximately 47 million American elders to choose their own caregivers. The program pays the caregivers, and they don’t have to be certified to assist seniors. If you enroll in the program, you can choose a friend or family member to care for you during your senior years because, at the end of the day, your loved ones find taking care of your health more than a job.

Why should you consider taking part in the CDPAP program?

The CDPAP / Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program enables you to select a friend or family member as a caregiver and use Medicaid to pay for their services.New York State created this program as an alternative to home attendant services and traditional home health help to allow the patient or a designated representative to appoint a caregiver.

You have several benefits if you enter the program.

You don’t have multiple caregiver adjustments

If you’d hire in-home care services, you may have to constantly deal with a new nurse entering and exiting your home and life. But CDPAP doesn’t require a learning curve for the caregiver to adjust to your preferences and cultural practices. You don’t have to start building a relationship from scratch because you have an established connection with them. You choose someone you know and trust so you don’t have to adjust your lifestyle to a stranger’s preferences.

You have more control over care

Working with a home healthcare agency offers limited control over who cares for you and how they do it. The caregiver may go on vacation or assist other clients, and a new one is assigned to you. This can leave you with someone who isn’t familiar with your daily needs and habits or lacks the critical information they need to care for your health. Working with someone new every month can be disruptive for your mental health and your family members who have to arrange for assistance at the last minute. Also, some agencies have restrictions on what services the caregiver provides and how long they can stay at your house. The Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program gives your control back, so you can choose the caregiver you prefer and decide what schedule fits your needs. Your caregiver focuses solely on you and therefore provides the best possible overall care.

Your current caregiver receives extra support

If you already have a caregiver, they’re compensated for the help they provide free. Family members often still care for elders even if they hire a home care aide. So instead of hiring someone who does part of the job, hire one of your loved ones who is already helping you. It makes more financial sense to compensate for the care they provide.

What to look for in a caregiver

If more than one friend or family member care for you and you don’t know who to hire full-time, here is a list of things to consider.

Personality – all your loved ones care for you, but some simply lack the personality that meshes with you. Go with your gut instincts and select the friend or family member you feel most comfortable spending time with. Ask the candidates some questions to determine if they’d like to care for you full time.

Experience – some of your loved ones may have experience caring for other elder family members. Your home aide needs to know what activities are suitable for seniors and how to offer them medication according to their health issues. The Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program doesn’t require credentials or certification for caregivers, so you don’t have to worry that the ideal candidates lack them. Their experience is more than enough to tell you if they can assist you.

Will they sign a contract? When you work with an agency, this is covered. When you hire a loved one through the CDPAP program, you need to establish some details within the contractual agreement to avoid potential issues down the line. Make sure the contract includes

  • Schedules hours
  • Expected duties
  • Meal access
  • Rate and frequency of days off
  • Vacation time guidelines

Working with a CDPAP provider has advantages beyond those listed above, so check with Medicaid if you’re eligible for the program.

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