The Minnesota PCA Assessment

Are you interested in receiving PCA Services? In order to receive PCA Services in Minnesota, you will first have to meet with a Public Health Nurse in your county to have a PCA Assessment. To schedule a PCA Assessment you will need to contact the Public Health Department for the county you live in. For county contact information you may contact a Minnesota Home Care Agency.

At the PCA Assessment a PHN will ask you questions and observe you to determine your need for PCA Services. In order to qualify for services you need to be “dependent” in at least 1 Activity of Daily Living (ADL) or have Level 1 behavior. If you need assistance with several ADLs you will get more help than if you need assistance with 1 or 2 ADLs. If you need assistance with critical ADLs (eating, transfers, mobility and toileting) you will get more help than if you need assistance with Non-Critical ADLs (grooming, dressing, bathing, positioning).

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) Include:

  1. Grooming;
  2. Dressing;
  3. Bathing;
  4. Transferring;
  5. Mobility;
  6. Positioning;
  7. Eating; and
  8. Toileting.

Being “dependent” in one of the above activities means either:

  1. You need: “hands-on assistance”, “constant supervision”, or “cueing”;
  2. Every time you complete the activity.

You do not need to do the activity every day, but if every time you do the activity you need hands on assistance, constant supervision, or cuing you have a “dependency” in that ADL.

For example:

  1. You do not need to bathe every day, but if you require assistance every time you bathe, then you have a dependency in bathing.
  2. Alternatively, if you need help getting out of the bath sometimes but other times you do not need help bathing, then you do not have a dependency in bathing.

As mentioned above, during your assessment or reassessment, the Public Health Nurse (PHN) will ask you several questions and observe you to determine your eligibility.  In order to qualify for services, your answers need to show that you have a “dependency” in at least one ADL activity listed above or level 1 behavior.  It is very important that you make sure you understand the questions asked of you and take your time in answering.

If you don’t understand a question, let the PHN know. If you need an interpreter, let the PHN know. If you would like someone to help you answer the PHN’s questions, arrange for someone (friend or family member) to be there during the assessment. If you would like that person to be your responsible party, to make your PCA treatment decisions, let the PHN know. The person you choose as your responsible party will need to be there at the assessment.

We have also developed a PCA Self Assessment Tool to help you determine whether you might have a need for PCA Services. It is also a good way to start thinking about the kinds of help you need to live independently in your home. By becoming familiar with the PCA Assessment process and the kinds of things the PHN will be looking for, you can be more likely to receive a fair and accurate assessment.

Comments are closed.