How to be an effective CDPAP personal assistant

What is CDPAP? states, “CDPAP is a Medicaid program that allows consumers to direct their own home care. One of the highlights of the program is that it allows family members and friends to get paid to care for their loved ones.” CDPAP stands for Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program. CDPAP in NY allows elderly and disabled Medicaid recipients to choose a Personal Assistant (PA) of their choice to take care of them.

CDPAP Caregivers

Adult children, relatives (besides a spouse), friends and even neighbors are all able to participate as CDPAP PAs.  This allows consumers (the patient) to be cared for by the people they trust most, and allows their PA to get paid for something they are often already doing — taking care of a loved one.

A patient works with his or her CDPAP Personal Assistant and a medical professional, usually a state provided nurse, to develop a care plan to lay out which services are needed and how many hours of service are appropriate for the patient.  Every care plan will be different and uniquely modified for each individual.

PAs are eligible to provide care and assistance for their patient in many ways. Namely, PAs assist in activities of daily living (ADLs) such as meal preparation, bathing, light housekeeping, dressing wounds, as well as skilled nursing services. PAs may also administer medication and give insulin injections.

As with any type of caregiver, there are a few important guidelines to remember when your client has age-related health challenges.  The foundation of a healthy CDPAP relationship is trust, which can be established and maintained by paying attention to the following guidelines:

1) Listen with patience.  Elderly patients may have difficulty communicating due to memory deficits, disease-related symptoms or sensory challenges like hearing or vision loss. They may take extra time to express their needs or to respond to questions.  Just like us all, they may feel rushed or defensive if you interrupt them or try to finish their sentences. Taking the time to listen respectfully will make it easier for you to understand what their needs are and to respond effectively. This will save time and reduce stress for the both of you in the long run.

2) Encourage independence.  No adult wants to be treated like a child.  Even when illness and weakness make extra help necessary, it’s important to find out what the patient is capable of doing independently and provide him or her with the opportunity to do so. Fostering independence creates a cooperative partnership, allowing the elderly patient to maintain maximum self-sufficiency and reduce unwanted dependency.

3) Be yourself. One of the benefits CDPAP provides is friendship and an emotional connection. Those feelings are much harder to achieve when the caregiver is a stranger.  The PA is not just a pair of helping hands to the elderly patient, he or she is a highly-valued part of the patient’s daily support network.  Conversations and encouragement are essential parts of care a PA can provide. Giving a listening ear to the patient is just as important as helping prepare a meal or take a bath.  Social connectivity is a key to a high quality of life.  Creating a solid and loving working connection with a patient is so important to improve the lives of both the patient and the PA.

Do you have questions about CDPAP? Want to learn more about CDPAP? Contact Edison Home Health Care to find out how your loved one can enroll in CDPAP today and you can begin providing care for the people you love the most.


CDPAP PAs can sign up in one of the following Edison Home Health Care locations:

CDPAP Brooklyn: 946 McDonald Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11218

CDPAP Queens: 54-06 Myrtle Avenue 2nd Floor, Ridgewood, NY 11385

CDPAP Bronx: 391 E 149th St Suite 314, Bronx, NY 10455

CDPAP Buffalo: 5539 Broadway Suite 102, Lancaster NY 14086

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