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Connecticut Home Care Program for Elders (CHCPE)

Page Reviewed / Updated - September 20, 2020

Program Description

The Connecticut Home Care Program for Elders (CHCPE) is designed to assist aging Connecticut residents who are at risk of nursing home placement. The goal is to allow qualified seniors who require medical and personal care to remain living at home instead of being placed in a skilled nursing facility. This program also permits individuals to reside in adult foster care, as well as some assisted living residences. A variety of other services are provided to seniors as determined necessary by a health screening process and by their choice of residence.

Program administration is under the Connecticut Department of Social Services, Alternative Care Unit. To avoid confusion, it is worth mentioning that this program is also referred to as CHCPE Alternate Care and the Home and Community Based Services Waiver for the Elders.  Also worth mentioning is an option under CHCPE, Adult Family Living / Caregiver Homes, which also helps frail seniors avoid nursing home placement.

Eligibility Guidelines

This program is open to Connecticut residents aged 65 and older who are at risk of being placed in a nursing home. What follows are the least restrictive requirements. There are four tiers of eligibility relevant to those 65 and over (two of which are state funded and two of which are reimbursed via Medicaid). That being said, anyone meeting or having greater need than described below will qualify for the program.

Functional Need
The candidate must have a critical need for assistance with at least 1-2 activities of daily living, which include eating, dressing, personal hygiene, transferring, and the ability to maintain continence and use a toilet.

Financial Need
CHCPE has two sets of financial eligibility criteria. One of two must be met (state funded or Medicaid Waiver) to receive services under this program. Make note, if one meets the financial criteria for Medicaid, he or she must apply for Medicaid. If one does not, he or she may receive state funded services.

Set 1, State Funded: as of 2020, there is no income limit for state funded services, but a participant’s assets are limited. The asset limit is $38,592 for an individual or $51,456 for a married couple. 

Set 2, Medicaid Funded: To receive services via the Medicaid Waiver, an individual’s income is limited to $2,349 / month, and assets are limited to $1,600. For married couples, where only one spouse is applying, the asset limit increases to $27,328. However, based on a spousal assessment, it is possible a higher amount of assets may be retained.  Make note, an applicant’s primary residence, given the equity value is under $893,000, and a vehicle is considered to be exempt assets. Other exempt assets include irrevocable burial contract up to $5,400 or revocable burial funds up to $1,800, a burial plot, and whole life insurance policies up to a total face value of $1,500.

Acceptance into the CHCPE program does not mean a senior’s care needs are completely paid for by CHCPE. Depending on their income, seniors may be asked to cover a portion of the costs. For instance, those who are funded by the state typically have to pay 9% of the total cost as a co-payment.

Benefits and Services

This program provides a variety of care services and supports to individuals living at home, in the community, and in assisted living, but not to individuals in skilled nursing residences. These services are determined on a case-by-case basis and some may be limited by the available budget for the program.

  • Adult Day Health Services
  • Adult Family Living
  • Assisted Living Services
  • Assistive Technology
  • Care Management
  • Chore Services
  • Companion Services
  • Home Delivered Meals
  • Light Housekeeping
  • Minor Home Modifications
  • Personal Care
Previously, some services under this program could be "self-directed," meaning the participant could choose their own care provider. With the recent launch of the CT Community First Choice (CFC) Option, those wishing to self-direct are able to do so via CFC.

How to Apply / Learn More

For more information or to apply call 800-445-5394, visit the Connecticut’s Home Care Program for Elders website, or apply online.  Interested parties should be aware that participation in this program is based on the availability of funds. Wait lists may exist or may exist for certain services or eligibility category.

Other programs that may be of interest to CT residents are the PCA Program, which provides personal care assistance for disabled adults 18-64 years old, the experimental Assisted Living Program, and the more structured Congregate Housing Services Program.