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PCA qualified professional

  • What is a qualified professional (QP)?

    Qualified professionals supervise PCA services. Your qualified professional works for your PCA provider agency.  Qualified professionals may be:

    • Registered nurses
    • Licensed social workers
    • Mental health professionals
    • Qualified developmental disabilities specialists.

    If your PCA is performing health-related tasks, your qualified professional must be a registered nurse.

  • What does the qualified professional do?
    • Develop your care plan (traditional PCA, PCA Choice by request)
    • Develop and oversee your month-by-month plan (traditional PCA, PCA Choice by request)
    • Train, orient and evaluate new PCAs (traditional PCA, PCA Choice by request)
    • Supervise 16- and 17-year old PCAs
    • Train PCAs who assist with tracheostomy suctioning and people using ventilators
    • Oversee the delivery of PCA services
    • Ensure your health and safety needs are met
    • Document changes in condition and request reassessments.
  • Why do I need a qualified professional?

    To help ensure:

    • The quality of PCA services
    • That your health and safety are protected.

    PCA services are funded by state and federal taxes and supervision helps:

    • Prevent and identify fraud
    • Provide greater accountability for the use of public funds.
  • How often does the qualified professional visit?

    Traditional PCA

    If you are getting traditional PCA services, the qualified professional will visit your home:

    • Within the first seven days to orient and train new, regularly scheduled PCAs (these first two visits may be combined)
    • Within the first 14 days to evaluate new PCAs (these first two visits may be combined)
    • Every 60 days to evaluate 16 and 17-year-old PCAs
    • Every 90 days to oversee the delivery of PCA services, during the first year of service
    • Every 120 days to oversee the delivery of PCA services, after the first year of service 
    • Every 180 days, at the shared services site, if you are using shared services.

    PCA Choice

    If you are using the PCA Choice option the QP will visit your home:

    • Every 180 days
    • Every sixty days to evaluate 16 and 17 year old PCAs
    • Every 180 days, at the shared services site, if you are using shared services.

    After 180 days of service, the qualified professional may alternate face-to-face visits with telephone or web visits with you and your responsible party to oversee the delivery of PCA services. However, only face-to-face visits may be billed for reimbursement.

    For more information, see Qualified Professional Activities and Timelines DHS-4691 (PDF).


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