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Please note this information is based on the information we have received from the State at the Implementation Council meetings and based on current legislative language, any or all could change when the final approval is received.

The State of Minnesota is working on developing a new service called Community First Services and Supports (CFSS) program. CFSS will replace the existing Personal Care Assistance Program (PCA) and the Consumer Support Grant Program (CSG). Accra wants to make you aware of how this change may affect you. Here are some questions that you may have about this change:

Why is the State making this change?
Minnesota has been working for several years on changes to the PCA program, with the goal of making it a more self-directed program. The CSG program will change as well since you must qualify for PCA services to receive CSG. Some positive changes are:

  • Individuals receiving CFSS will have the option to purchase goods that could replace the need for human assistance as part of their services instead of staffing only. Examples of goods that may be approved are: a fence for a child that runs away so they can be more independent in their yard, or Assistive Technology that provides reminders for tasks to be completed. If you decide to purchase goods, it will come out of the hours authorized for staffing. Goods were already allowed on the CSG
  • Parents of minors and spouses will be able to be paid with this program. Currently this is not allowed with the PCA program, it is currently allowed with the CSG program.
  • CSG participants will no longer need to waive the federal portion of their budget.

Will I be able to keep my staff?
Definitely. Both the state and providers know how important your staff.

When will this change occur?
The State has submitted a request to the federal government for approval for this change. They must get approval before it can start. As of March 12, 2014 the State was not able to give an implementation date. Once they get approval, the State is planning on a six month transition.

Why isn’t there an actual start date?
The process for approval with the federal government takes time. There is also an additional development that has slowed the process down, the federal government issued a new definition of Home and Community Based Services. The CFSS program must meet this definition before the service can start. The State is working to understand this new requirement and to make sure the CFSS service will meet the requirements.

Will I have to switch providers?
It depends on the model that you choose. You will have the choice of two models: agency model which is very similar to what you have today where an agency like Accra Care/Choices for Children is the employer and provides support for your services or budget model where the consumer/responsible party will be the employer and will use a Fiscal Management Entity (FME). With this model the consumer will be responsible for worker’s compensation and other employer related duties. At this time it looks like agencies like Accra Care/Choices for Children will not be allowed to provide both of these services. We believe that the agency model best fits Accra’s mission and therefore, if you choose the budget model you may be required to switch providers.

Who will help me make the decision of which model to choose?
There is a new support service that is being developed with CFSS called Consultation Service. This service will be available to all recipients to help understand the two models and help with developing the plan that will be used for CFSS.

Can I purchase goods on both models or only with the budget model?
You will be able to purchase goods on both the agency model and the budget model. With the budget model everything will go through the FME and will need to be in the approved plan. For the agency model your staffing will run through a provider, such as Accra. If you want to purchase goods, they will need to be identified in your approved plan and the money for the goods will come out of your overall staffing budget. You will use the FME for the purchase or reimbursement of the goods.

Will I still have a Qualified Professional to work with my staff?
Yes, this service will continue with CFSS. It is being renamed Worker Training and Development.

How can I get more information?
The State is planning to have a website with information on the CFSS program. When that is developed we will share the link. Staff from Accra are attending all of the meetings regarding the development of this service and will continue to provide updates as we get them. We will continue to add updates to our website: www.accracare.org. The next meeting is scheduled for June 16, 2014 and we will post relevant updates then. There remains many unanswered question as the State continues to plan how this service will be implemented. Our goal is to provide you with information as we get it and make the transition from PCA/CSG to CFSS as smooth as possible.