Choosing the right care program for yourself, or an elderly or disabled loved one is a crucial decision, you want the best possible care options available. Adult Foster Care (AFC) and the Personal Care Attendants Program (PCA) are two programs in Massachusetts that provide essential care services. In this blog post, we’ll explore these programs, highlighting why AFC often emerges as the preferred choice for many families.
Adult Foster Care (AFC/GAFC): Providing a Caring Home Environment
Adult Foster Care (AFC): Adult Foster Care, often referred to as AFC or Adult Family Care, is a MassHealth funded program designed for elderly or disabled individuals who are unable to live alone safely. Under AFC, individuals live with eligible caregivers, receiving assistance with personal care, supervision, and help with daily household activities. AFC participants are assigned a Registered Nurse and a Case Manager to oversee their care and create customized care plans.
AFC Eligibility (Receiving Care): To qualify for AFC, individuals must require 24-hour cueing/supervision or assistance with one or more Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). They must also be at least 16 years of age and have or be eligible for MassHealth coverage.
AFC Eligibility (Caregiver): AFC caregivers must be at least 18 years old, live with the person needing care, pass a background check, and follow AFC care guidelines.
BENEFITS OF AFC
- Tax-Free Payment: Caregivers receive tax-free payments via check, direct deposit, or a VITRA Debit Card, offering financial assistance that makes a significant difference.
- Caregiver Education: AFC provides resources and education for caregivers, ensuring they are well-prepared to provide quality care.
- Customized Care Plans: Each client receives personalized care plans tailored to their unique needs.
- Assigned Registered Nurse & Case Manager: AFC participants benefit from professional oversight and support from a Registered Nurse and Case Manager.
- Client Remains at Home: AFC enables clients to stay in the comfort of their home, avoiding long-term care facilities.
- Insurance Support: The program helps with insurance-related matters.
- Bilingual Staff: Bilingual services are available to cater to diverse communities.
- Paid Time Off: Caregivers receive 14 days of paid time off.
- Regular RN/CM Visits: Clients have the advantage of one visit per month with a Registered Nurse and Case Manager.
Personal Care Attendants Program (PCA)
Personal Care Attendants Program (PCA): The Personal Care Attendants Program, or PCA, is a MassHealth funded program designed to provide home care services to older adults and people with disabilities who live in their own home or community. PCA helps individuals maintain their independence by providing funds to hire personal care attendants (PCAs)..
PCA Eligibility (Receiving Care): To qualify for PCA, individuals must need daily cueing/supervision or assistance with two or more Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). They must have a permanent or chronic disability or illness and receive approval from their doctor.
PCA Eligibility (Caregiver): PCA caregivers must be legally eligible to work in the United States, understand and carry out instructions of the PCA Consumer-employer, and meet certain age requirements..
BENEFITS OF PCA
- Provider Choice: PCA participants have the flexibility to choose their care providers.
- Scheduling Responsibility: Participants are responsible for managing their caregivers’ schedules.
- Hiring and Training: PCA Consumer-employers recruit, hire, train, and may discharge caregivers if needed.
- Income Guidelines: MassHealth will pay for PCA services if participants qualify and meet income guidelines.
While both Adult Foster Care (AFC) and the Personal Care Attendants Program (PCA) offer essential services, AFC often emerges as the preferred choice due to its holistic approach. AFC not only provides financial assistance but also offers a caring home environment, professional support, and a range of benefits that prioritize the well-being of both caregivers and recipients. Ultimately, the choice between AFC and PCA should align with the unique needs and preferences of your loved one, but AFC’s comprehensive support and compassionate approach make it a standout option.