Ohio is a Technology First state, which means Remote Support must be considered as the first option when authorizing services for a person with disabilities before authorizing on-site Homemaker/Personal Care staff.

The person’s service and support administrator, or SSA, will assess them for a need for Remote Support. If there is a need, the SSA will include it in the person’s individual service plan. When discussing if Remote Support is right for someone, the person and their team should follow these steps:

  • Have a conversation to identify why a person uses direct care staff and if their health and safety needs can be met remotely.
  • Hold a team meeting to talk about which needs might be met remotely, for what hours, and how backup support will be provided.
  • If the person chooses Remote Support, he or she will use the free choice of provider process to select an agency provider. That provider will act as backup support to the person. The provider will subcontract with the Remote Support vendor to offer equipment and monitoring staff.
    • If the backup support is unpaid, natural supports like family or neighbors, the person, or their guardian will choose the vendor.
  • The service and support administrator will then work with the team to amend the individual service plan to include detailed procedures about the new Remote Support.
  • The Remote Support vendor will provide the person and their family, team, and agency provider training about the Remote Support equipment.

An individual service plan that includes Remote Support should detail backup support contact information and what to do if the person wants to turn off Remote Support equipment.

Remote Supports

Remote Support allows an off-site direct service provider to monitor and respond to a person’s health, safety, and other needs using live communication, while offering the person more independence in their home.

Remote Support uses two-way communication in real time, just like Skype or FaceTime, so a person can communicate with their providers when they need them. A person can choose supports like sensors that call for help if someone has fallen or cameras that help monitor who is visiting a person's home.

Providing this Service

Agency providers that have a Medicaid provider agreement and are DODD-certified can provide this service.

Remote Support can be provided one-on-one or as a group service.

Remote Support may be used with either paid or unpaid backup support.

Paid backup support is when a paid caregiver responds to a person receiving Remote Support who needs on-site assistance, or the equipment stops working for any reason. When backup support is provided on a paid basis by an agency provider, the agency provider is the primary point of contact for the Remote Support vendor.

Unpaid backup support may be provided by a family member, friend, or someone who the person with disabilities chooses. 

Training Requirements for this Service

After initial provider certification and completing annual training requirements, the following is required to provide this service.

The agency provider must receive training from the Remote Support vendor about how to operate and maintain the Remote Support equipment.

Billing and Payment Information

All services must be delivered as specified in the individual service plan and authorized in Payment Authorization for Waiver Services, known as PAWS, to be successfully submitted for payment through eMBS.

Rates and limits for Remote Support are contained in the service rule's appendix.