Changes to Special Services at Home Funding

In response to the challenges of the COVID-19 outbreak, MCCSS has made some temporary changes to expenses that are eligible for reimbursement through SSAH funding. New eligible expenses include personal protective equipment, sensory items, exercise equipment, and delivery fees for items such as groceries and medication. There is also an expansion to support for technology purchases, including streaming services such as Netflix.

MCCSS is also reporting that families will receive 25% of their 2020/2021 funding up front, in order to ease the financial burden.

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The full updated list from the MCCSS website is below:

  1. Sensory Items
    • To support children and youth who rely on sensory items to alleviate anxiety/stress and/or support any clinical or behavioural plans.
      • e.g. multi-sensory related products and technologies.
  2. Technology
    • Provide children and youth the means and ability to stay safe, connected, and occupied and engaged at home, including in virtual and online learning and skill development activities. These items include:
      • Laptops and tablets;
      • Online educational and e-learning activities and resources;
      • Videogames and videogame systems;
      • Webcams and microphones;
      • Media service subscriptions and platforms (e.g. Netflix, Xbox Live, Disney+) (Note: this will not include cancellation fees);
      • E-readers (e.g. Kindle or Kobo); and
      • Remote monitoring devices and medical alert services and devices.
    • The approval of technology will also support the virtual engagement of people with disabilities and connections for families, providing some relief from caregiving requirements and alleviating some of the impacts of physical distancing.
  3. Items to support home-based recreation and fitness activities
    • Supplies to support home-based hobbies and activities that would otherwise be accessed through day programs, school and other community-based programs. Some examples include, but are not limited to:
      • Arts and craft supplies;
      • Hobby supplies;
      • Puzzles and games; and
      • Books for leisure/learning.
    • Supplies to support home-based physical activity and fitness. Some examples may include, but are not limited to:
      • Indoor items and equipment (e.g. skipping rope, yoga mat, resistance bands); and
      • fitness/sport equipment and supplies that may be used on the individual’s property (e.g. basketball net, trampoline, frisbee, badminton set)
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  1. Personal Protective Equipment and Supplies, When Available
    • To enable children and youth, their families and their support workers to be supported more safely at home or as required, in the community, which may be of heightened importance to children/adults who are immunocompromised. This includes items such as:
      • Gloves;
      • Masks;
      • Gowns;
      • Cleaning supplies (e.g. disinfectant wipes, sprays, and hand sanitizer); and
      • Goggles and face shields.
  2. Essential Service Delivery Fees
    • Where families are unable to leave their homes for groceries or pharmacy needs because of the vulnerability of their family member and/or because of their care requirements, service delivery fees for essential items such as groceries and medication will be an admissible expense. (Note: this does not include the actual cost of the groceries and/or medications, just the service fee for delivery).
    • Delivery fees for takeout food from restaurants are not included.
  3. Behavioural Support Plans and Related Interventions
    • Behavioural supports and interventions intended to assist families to more safely support their child at home. This may include:
      • development of behavioural support plans and recommended interventions (delivered in person or remotely/virtually)
      • Support strategies to reduce challenging behaviours or potential crisis situations.
      • Note: This does not include physiotherapy, occupational therapy or speech therapy.

Have you received your upfront funding? What purchases will you be making under the expanded guidelines?

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