The State of Minnesota has several programs designed to help older adults and individuals living with a disability to remain in their community rather than relocating to a facility. The Personal Care Assistance (PCA) Program, administered by the Minnesota Department of Human Services, is one such platform. Established in 1978, the PCA Program began after Minnesota amended the state’s Medical Assistance Program to include personal home assistance.
PCA Services are a form of home care assistance that supports individuals living in Minnesota with non-medical, health-related needs and daily activities. The goal of PCA services, as with other homecare options, is to help individuals live independently in their homes and community, as opposed to a facility.
Available to individuals of all ages with special healthcare needs, PCA services are a paid benefit under the Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare Program and may be provided through the fee-for-service program; Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waiver programs; or through prepaid health plans (UCare, Etc.).
When you choose PCA services to support your lifestyle or that of a loved one, you can expect the following homecare services:
To allow more flexibility and meet the changing and varying needs of individuals who receive care, Minnesota’s PCA program also allows for home care services to be provided through other delivery models described below:
To be eligible to receive PCA Services, you must:
At a PCA Assessment, a Public Health Nurse (PHN) will ask you questions and evaluate your needs to determine your eligibility for PCA services. As mentioned above, in order to qualify for services, you need to be “dependent” in at least one ADL or have Level 1 behavior. If you need assistance with several ADLs, you will get more help than if you require assistance with one or two ADLs. Wondering if you might qualify? Take our PCA Self Assessment.
If you require assistance with critical ADLs (e.g. eating, transfers, mobility, and toileting), you’ll receive more help than if you need assistance with Non-Critical ADLs (e.g. grooming, dressing, bathing, positioning).