CDPAP Does More With Less As It Enrolls Nearly 10,000 Patients Into Personalized Care Programs

New York’s Consumer-Directed Personal Assistance Program (CDPAP) has enrolled, in its nearly three decades of operation, around 10,000 patients into personalized care programs, generating significant benefits for such individuals and reducing costs typically associated with such services.

Over this period, the program has witnessed significant expansion, eligible to almost anyone who is in need and eligible for Medicaid, and has consequently generated benefits through cost-savings and care-enhancements.  Seeking a more-personal, personal care system in which persons in need of care or their representatives can choose or designate their own care workers, programs such as CDPAP offer a rare combination of improvements in quality and increased fiscal responsibility.

As the Consumer-Directed Personal Assistance Associate of New York State (CDPAANYS) has stated, ‘consumer-driven models of financing and delivering services permit the person needing service greater choice and control’ while simultaneously ensuring efficient funding of these patients’ care.

Indeed, due to its unique structure, the CDPAP is not only highly personalized, and in many cases better, care; one of the reasons this program is such a celebrated innovation is because New York’s CDPAP not only does more, but ‘does more with less’.  Within this context, it is important to briefly understand the cost-effectiveness of this program as it accomplishes a rare feat of improving services as well as fiscal responsibility.

How, then, has New York managed to deliver a highly personalized, fiscally-responsible safety net for many disabled or elderly individuals? This program is highly structured and emphasizes a key set of requirements for entrants.  By utilizing federal, state, and local funds and distributing these funds as needed for each case, there have been noted savings to Medicaid funding from this program.

The Department of Health, for instance, estimated the savings in hourly costs for personal care to be $2.16, which obviously adds up quickly.  Furthermore, by eliminating ‘middle men’, ensuring personal care, and orchestrating Medicaid reimbursement, the cost-sharing within CDPAP is equitable, eliminates unnecessary agents, and, thus, benefits all parties involved.

Similarly, the NY Education Department argues that, in addition to the benefits of ‘self-direction’, decreased costs are a leading factor in the increasing emphasis on consumer-directed personal assistance programs, with lower costs per hour of service leading to New York saving Medicaid funds and consequently capable to ensuring adequate coverage across the board.

With a combination of caps on expenditures and costs to Medicaid as well as the ‘slightly lower Medicaid rate payable…than is paid to home care services agencies’, there is no doubt that New York’s CDPAP is among the stand out consumer-directed personal assistance programs in the country.

As a representative of the benefits to be derived from such programs, thus, any understanding of New York’s program can only expand the awareness and utilization of personal care programs.  Whether in New York, California, or Arkansas, consumer-directed programs which ensure personal home care in a cost-effective manner have consistently proven successful.

With growing enrolment and amidst great uncertainty surrounding the continued funding of Medicaid and similar programs, particularly at the federal level, New York’s CDPAP stands out as a distinct safety net for those in need of such personal care.  By developing a cost structure that decreases state, federal, and individual costs, the CDPAP developed by New York is effective, efficient, and fiscally responsible; few programs can claim that and even fewer can say that they, at the same time, improve patients’ quality of care.

Applications for Senior Housing in East New York Available Until Jan 14


The window to submit an application for affordable senior housing is closing soon, on January 14, 2017. Fifty-three new one bedroom apartments for low income senior citizens are coming to 137 Jamaica Avenue. One and two person households are eligible to apply. According to Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation, one person households may have a maximum annual income of $31,750 and two person households may have a maximum income of $36,250.

Applications are available here online, in person at the Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation office at 2966 Fulton Street,  by calling 212-765-7900, Ext. 304 or emailing

Applications must be mailed back to the post office box listed on the first page and must be postmarked by January 14, 2017. New tenants will be selected by lottery.

Abandoned Bronx Church To Be Turned Into Senior Housing Facility

Courtesy NY1

For the past year, Barry Williams has cared for this abandoned property on Home Street.

He cuts the grass in the summer, and shovels snow in the winter.

“It was just the right thing to do,” Williams said. “It looks better.”

A bit of maintenance that cannot quite hide the eyesore this crumbling church has become in this residential neighborhood.

“There’s buildings all around and you look at that right there and it doesn’t look right,” said one neighborhood resident.

The Home Street Presbyterian Church was built in 1910. A burst pipe, internal problems among the congregation and finally, a fire contributed to its demise.

It has been vacant for about five years, yet signs out front suggested it might one day return as a house of worship.

“It doesn’t look good,” said a neighbor. “They need to do something with it.”

Enter Bronx Pro Group — a family owned, Bronx-based developer of subsidized affordable housing.

The developer purchased the 9,500 square-foot plot from the Presbytery of New York in December for $850,000. It plans to replace the church with housing for senior citizens.

“This is going to be a great opportunity to address the needs of seniors,” said John Duddley District Manager of Community Board 3. “We are increasing in that aging population.”

The eight-story building will include 64 studio and one-bedroom apartments.

Thirty percent of them will be reserved for homeless seniors.

Amenities will include a gym, rooftop terrace and a 3,000 square-foot space that will be leased to the Home Street Presbyterian Church to operate as a non-denominational community center.

“I’m happy that happened, because when you have a vested interest in the community,” Williams said. “You want to see that they still remain a stake in the community.”

“On September 14th, Community Board 3 will vote on the project,” said Duddley. “If approved, the community board will give the developer a letter of support.”

If the project clears all the necessary city approvals, construction is expected to begin early next year. The developer says a total cost for the project has not been finalized.

It Pays To Take Care of Elderly Relatives Through CDPAS Program

What is CDPAS?

The Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Services, or CDPAS, is a Medicaid program that provides medical and aide services for individuals who are disabled or suffering from a chronic illness. These services are provided by caregivers, such as home attendants, home health aides, or nurses. CDPAS allows recipients the freedom to manage their own caregivers, and gives the recipient flexibility in creating their own schedules, choosing their attendants, and making sure everything works within their comfort level.     

“(CDPAS) enables members to find aides who meet specific criteria that are important to them, such as cultural and language needs,” comments Brian Morgan, Business leader for MLTC at AlphaCare. “It places a great deal of responsibility on the member to direct their care … – but many feel that the benefits far outweigh the responsibilities.”

How does it work?

Recipients of CDPAS are responsible for choosing, hiring, training, supervising, and (if needed) terminating their personal caregiver. If the recipient prefers a caregiver they already know, adult family members (other than a spouse) can be hired, regardless of whether or not they live with the recipient.  Recipients are also responsible for keeping payroll records, arranging and organizing any additional services, and preparing back-up coverage.  It is the recipient’s duty to make sure that their caregivers are trained to meet the mandatory requirements for health tests, immunizations and examinations. Recipients also make sure that nurse attendants are registered, and that alternate attendants are available when the primary caregiver is unavailable.    

Who is eligible?

To be eligible for CDPAS, an individual must be eligible or be receiving New York State Medicaid.  They also must be eligible for medical assistance, long-term care or personal care services, and be able and willing to make clear, knowledgeable choices and judgments on the management of their services. In order to begin receiving CDPAS, individuals need approval from the CDPAS, Medicare, and the New York City Human Resources Administration/ Department of Social Services (HRA/DSS). To be approved by the Department of Social Services, a Physician’s Order for Services form needs to be filled out by a licensed physician, physician assistant, or a certified nurse, after conducting a medical examination of the prospective recipient.


Everything You Need To Know About FIDA

What Is FIDA?

FIDA stands for Fully Integrated Duals Advantages. It is a program that combines Medicare and Medicaid services together with Long-Term Management Care (MLTC) services to create one large, cohesive plan. The aim of FIDA is to organize and improve the coordination and quality of both Medicare and Medicaid services while still allowing the recipient flexibility in controlling their personal services.    

Who Is Eligible?

People who receive Medicare Part B are entitled to the benefits of Medicare Part A, are eligible for Medicare Part D and MLTC, and who receive full Medicaid benefits are eligible for FIDA. They also must:

  • Be over 21 years of age.
  • Live in the Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Richmond, Suffolk or
    Westchester Counties.
  • Require community-based long-term care for more than 120 days OR be eligible but not receiving facility-based or community-based LTSS.

People who are eligible for FIDA are not required to enroll in FIDA. It is not a mandatory program. Recipients of FIDA can withdraw at any time, with no effect on their prior Medicare and Medicaid services.

What Does it Change?  

Recipients of FIDA must use doctors and providers approved by their FIDA plan’s network. But, recipients are allowed a transition period of 90 days from time of enrollment in which they can still see their current provider or doctor. Exceptions to this are:

  • If a recipient is part of a nursing facility that does not participate in their FIDA plan, then they are allowed to stay in that facility while still receiving FIDA.  
  • If the recipient is receiving behavioral health services prior to enrolling, then they are allowed to continue it until the treatment is complete, but it cannot exceed over 2 years.
  • If the recipient gets permission from their FIDA plan to continue seeing a non-FIDA provider.

FIDA plans also cover prescription drugs, nurse care support and home coverage, personal care, behavioral health, and adult social daycare.  

Where can I learn more about FIDA plans?

To learn more about FIDA plans and whether it’s a good choice for you or a loved one, visit
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Governor Cuomo Signs Legislation to Support Family Caregivers

Governor Cuomo announced the signing of the Caregiver Advise, Record and Enable Act, which will require that hospitals allow patients to formally designate a caregiver before they leave the hospital, or are transferred to another facility. It will also require hospital workers to provide the caregiver with instruction or training on how to perform tasks for the patient at home, such as changing bandages or administering medication.

“Often, the hardest part of recovery begins once a patient leaves a hospital,” Governor Cuomo said. “This new law will allow New Yorkers to appoint someone they trust to assist in their care and help them return to their daily lives. I thank Senator Hannon and Assemblymember Rosenthal for their diligent work on this important issue. ”

The bill (S.676B/A.1323B), which was signed late Monday, requires hospitals to record the name, phone number and address of the caregiver in the patient’s medical record. The hospital must then notify the caregiver of the patient’s upcoming discharge at least 24 hours in advance and offer instruction in all after-care tasks, which will be designated in the patient’s discharge plan.

Senator Kemp Hannon said, “Patients leaving a hospital often require after-care that is provided by that individual’s immediate family or friends, who are asked to assist the patient with basic activities like walking, eating and dressing, as well as other complex tasks like providing wound care or operating medical equipment. This law will require those caregivers to be included in and receive instructions as to how to perform those post-hospital tasks before the patient is discharged.”

Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal said, “Now that the CARE Act has become law, thousands of caregivers in New York will be provided with the support they need to more effectively look after their ailing loved ones at home. I am pleased that Governor Cuomo recognized the importance of this legislation, and thank AARP, a champion of this effort nationwide, for its relentless advocacy for family carergivers.”

Beth Finkel, State Director of AARP in New York State, said, “This is a great day for family caregivers across New York, and AARP is very thankful to Governor Cuomo for making a real and positive difference in the lives of millions – whether they be those providing care to family members and loved ones at home or those receiving the care. Information is power, and the CARE Act will empower millions of family caregivers.”