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I want CDPAP but I can’t find a PA

Family members won’t work for you. Or maybe they can’t work for you. Friends are not available. What’s a person to do? How can you find someone to provide the personal care you need if you are entitled to home care through Medicaid in New York State?

This is a very common challenge to seniors and people with disabilities. The individual who will be caring for you will be performing very personal tasks. You need to feel comfortable. You need to feel safe with the individual. After all, you will be spending many hours together, most likely. You want to be sure that you like the personality of the caregiver, and you will get along well. You also want him or her to take you seriously, provide all the hours of caregiving, and not take advantage of you.

You are not alone. More than half of the consumers who use CDPAP don’t use family members as personal assistants and have to cast a wide net to find suitable candidates. This figure is based on surveys by CDPAANYS, the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Association. This is an organization that assists families, workers, and providers to make the CDPAP program work effectively and advocates for them. You should get to know this organization and its website.

They have resources that will help you recruit, advertise, interview, and hire PAs from the community. You may never have hired anyone, yet you will be the employer. There will be responsibilities for both you and your future employee. You both will be expected to understand the rules, communicate needs and wants, train your personal assistant, and comply with regulations set by the state. CDPAANYS has a very helpful Consumer Resources Center on its website which will give you great guidance on how to manage all of this and more. Recruiting and Hiring Resources is where you can start.

Look for templates and sample ads. There is a menu of creative recruiting ideas and interviewing suggestions. There’s even a webinar on the These tips were compiled by actual users of CDPAP to help their peers. Remember to hover over the photos for each set of resources. They are not just photos of consumers and personal assistants. Each photo is clickable, and you will find a complete list of different tips through each one.

As always, Caring Professionals staff are available to explain things at each step of the process. You are not in this alone. You will be supported so that you understand your rights and can be proactive about handling timekeeping, attendance, and emergencies.

Don’t give up on CDPAP! Learn how to make it work for you with this help. After all, CDPAP was designed for you-to give you choice and power to manage your own care. It developed as a choice because the members of the disability community worked for it. And it enabled many to move out of institutions and into their own homes where they wanted to be.

Want to be at home and taken care of properly? Don’t want the agency sending people you haven’t interviewed in your space for hours per week? Invest in perusing these invaluable tips from people just like you.

Quick guide to the steps you can take:

  • Visit the CDPAANYS website: Explore their Consumer Resources Center at
  • Use Available Templates and Resources: Look for templates and samples for ads that you can use to attract potential personal assistants.
  • Creative Recruiting: Consider the creative ideas provided by the CDPAANYS for recruiting individuals.
  • Interviewing Tips: Check out the suggestions for interviewing to ensure you find a compatible and reliable personal assistant.
  • Training and Compliance: Be prepared to train your personal assistant according to your specific needs and ensure both of you understand and comply with state regulations.
  • Support from Caring Professionals: Reach out to Caring Professionals staff who can explain the process, support you in understanding your rights, and assist with managing administrative tasks like timekeeping and emergencies.

Remember, the goal of CDPAP is to empower you to manage your own care at home, and these resources are designed to help you make the most of this program. If you need more detailed guidance or have specific questions, Caring Professionals dedicated CDPAP team will help you, contact them here.

What is CDPAP? Find out more about CDPAP from our CDPAP Articles and CDPAP Guides



About the Author

Picture of Faigie Horowitz

Faigie Horowitz

Faigie Horowitz, MS serves as director of communication at Caring Professionals. She advocates for the senior population on the state level and writes about senior and caregiver issues. She is a columnist for several periodicals. She has spent decades in nonprofit management and serves as a lay leader and founder of several community organizations.

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