Personal Care Attendant (PCA) Assessment


Public Health Nurses (PHN) from MVNA assess the need for Personal Care Attendants (PCA). PCAs help safely maintain people with disabilities and health problems in their homes. The PHN reviews and recommends qualified individuals for PCA services.

MVNA does not provide PCA services. MVNA is an independent contractor that provides the PHN, required by Minnesota statute, to complete the assessment for a PCA services recommendation.

To be eligible for PCA service, this benefit must be covered by insurance. Medicaid covers this service; Medicare does not cover PCA service.

Obtaining a PCA Assessment:

To obtain an assessment for PCA services, contact your insurance and request an assessment. Referrals can come from various sources, including friends or family, doctors, social workers, PCA agencies, or the individual him/herself.

Once a referral is made, a person’s insurance will forward it to an appropriate agency for assessment. With Medicaid recipients, Hennepin County will perform the first assessment for residents who live in Hennepin County.

A PHN will make a home visit to assess the recipient’s situation, including health problems, living situation, support in the community and other services in place. At the assessment the PHN observes the person’s condition and asks multiple questions regarding the person’s ability to care for themselves through activities such as bathing, dressing and mobility.

The PHN determines if the person meets criteria for dependency in certain areas.  These areas include: dressing, grooming, bathing, toileting, eating, transfers, mobility and positioning; behavior problems that may need supervision or redirection; and some technical medical procedures (catheter care, wound care).

The PCA may be able to assist with some light housekeeping as it relates to dependencies in the above area.

An individual may appeal the PHN’s recommendation if he or she disagrees with how much time has been recommended.

For more information, visit the Minnesota Department of Human Services website and enter "PCA" in the advanced search option box for full details on PCA services