One of the major appealing factors of choosing Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Services (CDPAS/CDPAP) over Traditional Home Care Services- which involves receiving care from a Home Health Aide (HHA) – is that through CDPAP, a Consumer is cared for by a Personal Assistant (PA) whose scope of practice is much greater than that of a traditional HHA.

When receiving services from a HHA, there are limitations on what tasks can be provided.  A HHA can only assist in activities of daily living (ADL’s) such as personal hygiene, bathing, dressing, toileting, transfers, and light house-keeping.  A key difference between HHA and PA level of care is that HHA’s cannot administer medication – they can only provide medication reminders.  This means that if the client is not self-directing, a family member, friend or POA must accept responsibility to administer necessary medication to the client if they wish to receive traditional home care services using a HHA.  This is one of the main reasons why more and more people are choosing CDPAP.  In CDPAP, PA’s can provide HHA level of care, as well as some skilled nursing activities.

Below are 10 skills that Personal Assistants may provide their Consumers, which Home Health Aides may not:

  1. Medication Administration
  2. Tracheostomy care
  3. Monitoring complex diets
  4. Administering topical treatments
  5. Assisting with tube feeding
  6. Providing sterile wound dressing of injuries
  7. Checking vital signs such as blood pressure, pulse, temperature, and respiratory rate
  8. Medical injections (such as insulin)
  9. Oxygen administration
  10. Preparing and using medical equipment such as ventilators

It is important to note that any tasks-whether it is designated for a Personal Assistant or for a Home Health Aide- must be identified on the Client/Consumer’s Care Plan by the assigned nurse before a PA or HHA can complete.  A PA or HHA cannot complete any tasks that are not directly listed on the Client/Consumer’s Care Plan.

Premier, an established and reputable Licensed Home Care Agency and Fiscal Intermediary is happy to help answer any questions you may have in regards to the difference between traditional home care and CDPAP.  We place a huge importance on equipping you with the knowledge you need to make an informed decision on which homecare option is best for you.