The HCBS Waiver for Persons with Brain Injury Waiver is a Medicaid program that provides services and supports to eligible individuals with brain injuries in Illinois.
The HCBS Waiver for Persons with Brain Injury (BIW) is one of the Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) waivers in Illinois. The purpose of this waiver is to provide services and supports that enable individuals with brain injuries to live in their own homes or other community settings rather than in intermediate care facilities for persons with intellectual or developmental disabilities (ICF-I/DD). The BIW serves individuals who meet the following criteria:
The BIW is designed to meet each participant's individual needs and preferences. The participant, along with their family, guardian, or advocate, works with a service coordinator to develop a care plan that outlines the goals, outcomes, and services that the participant will receive under the waiver.
To be eligible for the BIW, an individual must meet the following requirements:
To apply for the BIW, an individual must complete an application form and submit it to their local Department of Human Services – Division of Developmental Disabilities (DHS-DDD) office1. The DHS-DDD will then conduct an assessment to determine the individual's eligibility and level of care needs. If the individual is found eligible, they will be placed on a waiting list until a slot becomes available. The waiting time may vary depending on the availability of funding and services.
The BIW offers a range of services and supports that help individuals with brain injuries live independently and participate in their communities. Some of the services and supports available under the BIW are:
The BIW also covers other services such as adaptive equipment, assistive technology, behavior intervention and treatment, communication devices, crisis intervention, environmental accessibility adaptations, family and individual counseling, financial management services, home-delivered meals, homemaker, independent living skills training, interdisciplinary team, interpreter services, nutritional counseling, personal emergency response system, specialized medical equipment and supplies, supported community living, and vehicle modification.
The amount and type of services that each participant receives under the BIW depends on their individual needs and preferences. The participant's service coordinator will help them choose the most appropriate and cost-effective services that meet their goals and outcomes. The BIW has a cost cap that limits the amount spent on each participant's services. The cost cap for the BIW is $47,000 per year in 2023.
One of the benefits of the BIW is that it allows participants to self-direct some of their services, such as consumer-directed personal assistant and respite. Self-direction means that care recipients can choose who provides their services, including their family or friends. In other words, family caregivers can get paid to care for their loved ones under the BIW.
However, there are some limitations and conditions that apply to this option. For example:
The amount of compensation that family caregivers receive for providing services under the BIW depends on several factors, such as the type and frequency of service, the FMS agency's fee schedule, and the participant's budget. Illinois's average hourly rate for consumer-directed personal assistant providers is $13.48 in 2023. The average hourly rate for respite providers in Illinois is $11.98 in 2023.
If you are a family caregiver for a person with a brain injury, you may be eligible for this program that provides valuable services and support, including compensation for your caregiving work. To determine if you qualify for this program, please fill out this form.