To help people with developmental disabilities avoid unneeded and unwanted placement in institutions, the Division of Developmental Disabilities' Home-Based Support Services program can pay for services that assist individuals in their own homes. Home-Based Support Services provide a variety of services including:
Someone you and your family select to assist you with daily activities. A PSW can come to your home for a few hours each week or several hours daily.
Supports can be provided in areas such as eating, bathing, dressing, personal hygiene, community integration, preparing meals, transportation, and other activities of daily living.
How much assistance you need depends on many factors. For example:
It is a good idea to make a list of the things with which you need assistance. You and your family can also use the list later when conducting interviews.
Your service facilitator will help you decide which services you and your family will need and is also the first person to contact if problems arise.
Sources to help you find an PSW include your friends, neighbors, community bulletin boards, other people with disabilities, and your service facilitator.
There are several steps you and your family should follow to find an PSW who can work well with you and your family. These include deciding what you want in an PSW, interviewing applicants, and choosing a PSW.
Your PSW will be responsible for filling out and turning in to the Home-Based Support Services facilitator bills for personal support hours worked and transportation provided, if any, during each calendar month. Your PSW is also responsible for keeping any additional records that support the hours worked, miles traveled, and transportation provided, if any. These supporting documents, and copies of Home-Based Support Services bills are called an "audit trail" and must be sufficiently detailed and complete to verify the information sent to DHS. The Home-Based Support Services facilitator will verify that the rates submitted on monthly bills match the rate in the Service Agreement.
This is different for each person. The Service Agreement sets the maximum amount of hours that can be worked.
Yes. The reimbursement rate for the use of the PSW's personal transportation is 36 cents per mile (effective on 7/01/03).
Home-Based Support Services views the PSW as a private contractor and therefore will not withhold any taxes from payments. The PSW must pay taxes on all payments received. DHS will provide a 1099 Miscellaneous Income form at the end of the calendar year, usually at the end of January.
In addition to qualifications, also take into account the potential workers' personalities. You want someone with whom you and your family will be able to get along.
You may want to select more than one PSW. For example, if you need assistance in the morning getting up, the PSW who works in the morning may not be available at night to help you go to bed. So you may need one person for morning and another at night. Also, PSWs who are available during the week may not be available on weekends.
Remember, each new PSW must provide your Home-Based Support Services facilitator with the following items before they start providing services:
Since you and your family know what you want, in most cases, the best people to train your PSW are you and your family. But, if you and your family would like some guidance, talk to your service facilitator.
You and your family have the right to privacy, to make your own decisions and to manage your own lives.
Be firm and assertive, but also let your PSWs know you appreciate their efforts. Try to understand their feelings. If there is a problem, tell your PSW as soon as possible. Be clear and honest about what you like and dislike. Let your PSW know your needs, expectations and routine. It is a good idea to have a monthly meeting with your PSW to discuss any problems.
Respect your PSW's time off and privacy. Do not require your PSW to take on duties not previously agreed on.
Some of the things expected of PSWs are:
If you have a problem with your PSW, you should talk to that person about how you feel. Consider your PSW's feelings too. Both of you may come up with ideas to solve the problem. Discuss the solutions and choose the one that is best for both of you.
Without getting angry, you will need to let your PSW know in a very direct way that you have the right to make your own decisions. Tell your PSW exactly what you didn't like and what you would like done in the future.
If you and your PSW cannot come up with a solution, you should find someone else who fits your needs better. If possible, give your PSW one to two week's notice that you are letting him or her go. Sometimes your PSW will choose to leave sooner. In that case, you have to rely on your planned back-up system.
Remember, if you want your PSWs to be happy working for you, you should let them know you appreciate their work.
If you need help with any problem, you can call:
Your Home-Based Support Service Facilitator
Your Individual Service and Support Advocate
Be sure to keep a list of emergency numbers close to the telephone.
If you are eligible for Home-Based Support Services, DHS will pay for your PSW's salary up to the maximum stated in the Service Agreement and within the overall monthly service cost maximum.
Your PSW will be paid once or more each month, depending on how frequently bills are submitted. You and your PSW should make sure the hours are correct on the bills and submit them to Home-Based Support Services Facilitator. Staff of the Service Facilitation agency enter the bills onto the computer and mail diskettes to DHS. Your PSW should receive his or her payment approximately four weeks after the bills have been submitted.
Illinois Department of Human ServicesJB Pritzker, Governor · Grace B. Hou, Secretary
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