Home Care, Consumer Groups Oppose Eliminating Fiscal Intermediaries Caring for the Elderly and New Yorkers with Disabilities across the State

By Home Care, Consumer Groups | April 12, 2024

Home care and consumer organizations have joined together to vehemently oppose the proposal to eradicate all Fiscal Intermediaries (FIs) and centralize control under a single state agency contract.

FIs are essential entities ensuring individuals with disabilities and the elderly have access to consumer-directed home care services. The disastrous repercussions of such a consolidation were vividly exemplified in Pennsylvania, where over 20,000 consumers were left devoid of essential services as their caregivers went unpaid.

Preserving the integrity of our home care system is not just a matter of policy; it’s a commitment to the well-being of our citizens. Centralizing control under a single state agency contract jeopardizes the essential services provided to hundreds of thousands of New York’s elders and consumers with disabilities. We urge decision-makers to prioritize the needs of our most vulnerable populations and reject any proposal to eliminate Fiscal Intermediaries statewide. – Kathy Febraio, President of NYS Association of Health Care Providers

In New York, hundreds of thousands of disabled and elderly citizens rely on this indispensable program for fundamental services vital to their daily lives, such as dressing, feeding, and assistance with mobility.

It is baffling that while the state is celebrating an Executive Order calling for a Master Plan for Aging, services that support Older residents and their families are being decimated. Older individuals and families are dependent upon services through the Consumer Directed Personal Care program, and the support provided by local Fiscal Intermediaries – Becky Preve, Executive Director of Association on Aging in New York

New York cannot afford to entrust such a crucial responsibility to a singular entity, especially in the current climate where hospitals are overwhelmed, emergency rooms are inundated with patients awaiting care, and nursing homes are operating at full capacity.

New Yorkers deserve to easily access home care so they can live and age comfortably at home. Unfortunately, the latest plan coming out of Albany to hand one company a $7 billion no-bid contract would undermine consumer choice, limit care options, and allow tens of thousands of disabled New Yorkers and consumers to fall through the cracks and go without services, all to give an out of state company with a history of labor law violations one of the largest contracts in state history.” – Ilana Berger, New York Director of Caring Majority Rising

The proposal is the state’s response to the problems with the program as it is currently administered in the state. However, there are safeguards in place in the State to address these issue they are simply not being utilized.

There is no disagreement that bad actors are using the CDPAP program as a Medicaid mill to enrich themselves; the state already has the tools to address that issue but has simply refused to use them. – Maximino Rodriguez, CDR Manager of Government Affairs

We must safeguard the ability to provide adequate care for our most vulnerable populations and oppose the proposal to eradicate all Fiscal Intermediaries (FIs) and centralize control under a single state agency contract.

If the goal of CDPAP reform is to make administration easier for the state, then mission accomplished but if the goal is to actually support New Yorkers with disabilities and other at-risk populations, then our legislators need to support a policy with fiscal intermediaries across the State who know and understand the needs of the people this program was developed to support. The move to a single FI would be a colossal mistake, and one that takes choice and support away from people.   We urge our policymakers to stand up for people with disabilities by opposing these harmful changes to CDPAP.- Mike Alvaro, President and CEO of CP State

Al Cardillo, President of the Home Care Association (HCA) said: “The CDPAP proposals that have been advanced, including the single statewide fiscal intermediary, defy the realities of patient need and patient care not only in the CDPAP program, but the crisis in access and care across the entire health care system.  The Executive proposals have been prepared without regard for their exacerbation of these crises – hospital emergency room overburden, months-long delays in scheduling inpatient hospital procedures, individuals in need of in-home care unable to secure a home health aide or a nurse, individuals with severe disability needs struggling to keep their care intact and remain outside of long-term care facilities.  These proposals are devoid of any planning for or appreciation of their human and health system impact. HCA calls on the Legislature to continue to resoundingly reject these cuts in the final budget, as you have already done in the one-house budget bills you passed in March.  Hold your ground for the sake of your constituents and your community’s health system and work with those of us in the field who know the program, know the needs, and can work with you on better ways.”