In Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Program
The In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program provides in-home assistance to eligible aged, blind and disabled individuals as an alternative to out-of-home care and enables recipients to remain safely in their own homes. Over 550,000 IHSS providers currently serve over 650,000 recipients. To learn how to apply for services: Get Services IHSS.
Now Available: Free At-Home COVID-19 Tests for People Who Are Blind or Have Low Vision
The federal government has launched a new initiative to expand the availability of COVID-19 testing options that are more accessible for people who are blind or have low vision.
Learn more at the Administration for Community Living website. Order tests online or by calling 1-800-232-0233.
Please review the Notice below for additional information.
Information about COVID-19 vaccines, testing, scheduling a vaccination appointment and more is available at the CDPH COVID-19 website.
COVID-19 Vaccine Booster December 22, 2021 Notice
New Booster Shot Deadline Date
UPDATE: The public health order issued December 22, 2021 by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) requires IHSS & WPCS providers to be fully vaccinated and boosted with the COVID-19 vaccine. The deadline to acquire the vaccine booster dose has been extended.
The California Department of Public Health is updating its order requiring health care workers to be fully vaccinated and boosted by March 1, 2022 to allow delay of the March 1, 2022 deadline for receiving a booster.
Please review the Recipient Notice and the Provider Notice below for additional information.
COVID-19 Vaccine and Booster Medical Accompaniment Notice
IHSS providers can be paid to accompany their recipients to receive their COVID-19 vaccination and booster shot.
Please review the Recipient Notice and the COVID-19 Vaccine Medical Accompaniment Claim form below for additional information.
COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Notice
COVID-19-related supplemental paid sick leave for IHSS and WPCS providers has been reinstated. The COVID-19-related supplemental paid sick leave is available for IHSS and WPCS providers who meet the qualifying conditions to be eligible for this paid sick leave.
Please review the Provider Notice and Request Form below for additional information.
IHSS Tools and Resources for Emergency Situations
Power Outage Resources for IHSS Recipients and Providers -
These tools and resources can be used to prepare for emergency situations, including power outages and evacuations.
Important Program Information
About the IHSS Program
The administration of IHSS is a complex partnership that includes the following entities: program recipients, the California Department of Social Services (CDSS), Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), counties, public authorities, program advocates, providers, and employee unions.
IHSS is currently comprised of four programs:
- The original IHSS program, now named IHSS-Residual (IHSS-R), began in 1974 and is a state-and-county funded program with 65% State and 35% county dollars of the non-federal share. IHSS-R recipients make up less than 1.5% of the overall IHSS population.
- The Personal Care Services Program (PCSP) began in April 1993, and was the first IHSS program to obtain federal funding for recipients. PCSP recipients are eligible for full-scope Federal Financial Participation (FFP), and these Medi-Cal services are funded with 50% Federal, 32.5 % State, and 17.5% County dollars. PCSP recipients make up about 53% of the overall IHSS population.
- The IHSS Plus Option (IPO) began in September 2009 and replaced the IHSS Plus Waiver (IPW) demonstration program (more information below on the IPW). Recipients are also eligible for full-scope FFP Medi-Cal. IPO provides assistance to recipients who have parent-of-minor or spouse providers, or who receive Advance Pay (AP) and/or Restaurant Meal Allowance (RMA). Since the inception of the Community First Choice Option (CFCO) in 2011 (more below), the IPO recipients make up a little over 2.5% of the overall IHSS population.
- The Community First Choice Option (CFCO) was established through the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (enacted March 23, 2010) as a new State Plan option. CFCO provides home and community-based attendant services and supports for individuals who are eligible for medical assistance under the State Plan who meet specific income criteria and meet the Nursing Facility Level of Care (NF LOC). CFCO provides States with 6% additional federal funding for services and supports. CFCO was approved with an implementation date of December 1, 2011. CFCO recipients make up about 43% of the overall IHSS population.
IHSS assessments are completed during home visits at the initial intake assessment and annual reassessments. Recipients may request for a reassessment of need at any time if their needs or circumstances change. County social workers continuously monitor recipients’ cases and have frequent contact with recipients to ensure their needs are appropriately met through program services. IHSS social workers complete a needs assessment for each applicant or recipient using the following criteria: the Functional Index Rankings, the Annotated Assessment Criteria, and the Hourly Task Guidelines (HTGs).
Service authorizations are assessed during the needs assessment, which is a comprehensive review of the recipient’s medical history/diagnosis, medications/purpose, emergency contacts, physicians’ information, household composition, functional index rankings, mini-mental health assessment, necessary referrals to Adult Protective Services (APS), Child Protective Services (CPS), Fraud, community services, etc., language preferences and whether an interpreter is needed, and a full biopsychosocial assessment. The social worker needs to document all service needs and justify service authorizations in the case narrative.
IHSS Provider Enrollment Process
Upon approval of the recipient’s service authorizations, the social worker will assist the recipient in obtaining an IHSS care provider.Care providers may include, but are not limited to, family members, friends, neighbors, or registered providers through the public authority.
Time Sheet Processing
After the care provider has been successfully enrolled and is approved as the IHSS provider, s/he will receive time sheets in the mail retroactive to the date of application. The IHSS program has two pay periods from the 1 st through the 15th and the 16th through the end of the month. Care providers will complete these time sheets based on the hours they have provided care to the IHSS recipient. Care providers and recipients will sign the time sheets and submit them to the county to process payments through the statewide Case Management, Information, and Payrolling System (CMIPS).