Personal Care Attendant Program
The Personal Care Attendant (PCA) Program is a MassHealth program that assists people with long-term disabilities live at home independently. This is a consumer-directed program, which provides personal care services for people with disabilities.
Through our PCA Program, the Options program serves about 4,300 individuals living in Massachusetts, including Cape Cod and the Islands. This program serves people of all ages, disabilities and backgrounds. Options has staff who speak Spanish, Portuguese, Cape Verdean Creole, Haitian, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, and English.
Personal Care Attendants are hired, trained and supervised by the person with the disability (consumer). PCAs do not work for OPTIONS, or any other agency - they work for the consumer. As the employer, a consumer chooses who to hire, sets up a PCA schedule and trains PCAs to meet his or her own personal needs. PCAs are paid based on timesheets that are sent to the Fiscal Intermediary.
If the consumer cannot independently manage his or her PCA program, the consumer may have the help of a surrogate. The surrogate is often a family member but may be any other person identified by the consumer who has the ability to manage the program.
For the Official Website of the Personal Care Attendant Quality Home Care Workforce Council please click here http://www.mass.gov/pca
PCAs can help with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) such as:
- passive range of motion
- taking medications
- bathing or grooming
- dressing or undressing
PCAs can also help with Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) such as:
- meal preparation and clean-up
- transportation to medical appointments
- maintaining adaptive equipment
If a consumer needs help at night, such as for repositioning or toileting etc., PCA time can be approved for Night Attendant services.
PCA time is NOT approved for:
- cueing, prompting, guiding or coaching
Payroll and tax filing and reporting are usually handled by the Fiscal Intermediary, although some consumers do choose to handle this
function themselves. PCAs are covered by Workers Compensation and Unemployment Insurance.
The Personal Care Attendant program is available to people with disabilities who meet the following conditions:
- Personal Care Services are prescribed by a physician or nurse practitioner
- Have a permanent or chronic disability that impairs their ability to perform activities of daily living without physical assistance.
- Needs physical assistance with two or more activities of daily living
Service area: Servicing the state of Massachusetts
Rewarding Work (helping Consumers looking for a PCA and helping PCA's look for work):
MassHealth PCA Program and overtime rules:
Options PCA Consumer Handbook