Multipurpose Senior Services Program
Local Multipurpose Senior Service Program (MSSP) sites provide social and health care management for frail elderly clients who are certifiable for placement in a nursing facility but who wish to remain in the community. The goal of the program is to arrange for and monitor the use of community services to prevent or delay premature institutional placement of these frail clients. The services must be provided at a cost lower than that for nursing facility care.
Clients eligible for the program must be 65 years of age or older, live within a site's service area, be able to be served within MSSP's cost limitations, be appropriate for care management services, currently eligible for Medi-Cal, and certified or certifiable for placement in a nursing facility. MSSP site staff make this certification determination based upon Medi-Cal criteria for placement.
Under a federal Medicaid Home and Community-Based, Long-Term Care Services Waiver, MSSP provides comprehensive care management to assist frail elderly persons to remain at home. The program, which began in 1977 with eight sites, has expanded to 38 sites statewide and can serve up to 11,789 clients per month.
The services that may be provided with MSSP funds include:
- Adult Day Care / Support Center
Community-based programs that provide non-medical care to meet the needs of adults with disabilities; a variety of social, psychosocial, and related support services in a protective setting, necessary to reach a therapeutic goal.
- Housing Assistance
May include provision of physical adaptations and assistive devices, emergency assistance in situations that demand relocation, temporary lodging expenses in particular situations, and assistance to restore utility services.
- Chore and Personal Care Assistance
Services are provided by individuals to elderly persons who need outside help to maintain independent living. Chore is for purposes of household support and applies to the performance of household tasks rather than to the care of the client. Personal Care provides assistance to maintain bodily hygiene, personal safety, and activities of daily living.
- Protective Supervision
Insures provision of supervision to persons in their own homes who are very frail or otherwise may suffer a medical emergency. Such supervision does not require medical skills and can be performed by an individual trained to identify the onset of a medical crisis and able to summon aid in the event of an emergency.
- Care Management
Assists clients in gaining access to needed waiver and other local services regardless of the funding source. Care managers are responsible for ongoing monitoring of the provision of services included in the client's plan of care. Additionally, care managers initiate and oversee the process of assessment and reassessment of a client's level of care and the monthly review of plans of care.
Includes the supervision and care of a client while the family or other individuals who normally provide full-time care take short-term relief or respite which allows them to continue as caretakers.
Provides access to the community (e.g., non-emergency medical transportation to health and social service providers) and special events for clients who do not have means for transportation.
- Meal Services
Includes meals served in congregate settings or meals delivered to clients who are homebound, unable to prepare their own meals and have no caretaker at home to prepare meals for them.
- Social Services
Includes social reassurance / friendly visiting, individual or group counseling, and money management.
- Communications Services
Includes translation and interpretive services and the provision of emergency response systems.
Frequently Asked Questions
My father is only 63 years old, but otherwise he seems to meet the other requirements for MSSP. Can MSSP still help? If not, what do I do now?
- Since you must be at least age 65 to enroll in MSSP, your father wouldn't be eligible for this program at this time. Your local Area Agency on Aging (AAA) can provide information and refer you to other services in your father's community. The local AAA is listed in the telephone business white pages, or call 1-800-510-2020 for the AAA nearest his home.
What does it mean to be "certifiable for nursing facility placement?" I don't want to have to go into a nursing home.
- Being "certifiable" or "eligible" for nursing facility placement just means that you have disabilities that would qualify you to be in a nursing facility - it does not mean that you have to go into a nursing facility. A nurse who works for MSSP makes the certification. The goal of MSSP services is to see that people get the help they need to stay in their own homes as long as possible.
Why do you have to be on Medi-Cal to be on MSSP?
- The Medi-Cal program funds MSSP, so all enrollees of MSSP have to meet Medi-Cal eligibility criteria.
If I was to enroll in the MSSP program, could I still keep my In-Home Supportive Services caregiver?
- Yes, you can keep your same In-Home Support Services caregiver, as In-Home Supportive Services is a separate program from MSSP.
What if I need a service not covered by MSSP?
- There is no guarantee that MSSP will be able to pay for every service you need. When a need is identified, the first option is always to check whether family or friends can help. If these resources can't address your needs, then we look to other agencies in your community that have programs for which you might be able to qualify (e.g., In-Home Supportive Services, Meals on Wheels, etc.). MSSP will only consider spending it's program funds once these additional sources of help are explored. This determination is based on several factors, including the type of service (only a few things can be paid for by MSSP), the availability of the service in your local area, and your willingness to participate in the progam.
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