In Washington, family members can get paid for caregiving through one of two programs, either the state’s Medicaid Personal Care Program (MPC) or Veteran-Directed Care. Both of these programs give seniors money to pay family and friends who take care of them at home if they’re eligible.

Medicaid Personal Care Program

MPC helps with activities of daily living in a senior’s or family member’s home as an alternative to nursing home admission. Seniors can also receive services in an assisted living facility if they choose, but it’s important to know that room and board (rent) isn’t covered through MPC. The program allows seniors to hire family members (with the exception of their spouse) as caregivers. Non-professional caregivers must be 18 or older and undergo a background check to qualify.

To be eligible for MPC, seniors must be 65 or older and need help with daily living activities. They must also have a monthly income that’s limited to 100% of the Federal Benefit Rate ($914 in 2023) and countable assets of $2,000 or less. These numbers are slightly higher if both spouses are applying. To get started, seniors should apply for Medicaid. Once approved, they can contact their local HHS office or Medicaid case manager to sign up for MPC.

Veteran-Directed Care

Veteran-Directed Care is similar to MPC but is limited to veterans receiving VA health benefits. All enrolled veterans are eligible for this program if they meet the need for a nursing facility level of care. Seniors can apply for the program through their local VA office or Area Agency on Aging.

Caregivers receive compensation, training and support for their services. Other services seniors can get include:

  • Housekeeping, home maintenance and chores
  • Home modifications, such as walk-in tubs and wheelchair ramps
  • Personal care
  • Transportation
  • Health services, such as massage therapy, nutrition counseling and weight loss programs
  • Escort assistance for shopping and errands