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In home health support services – IHSS Programs


IHSS Programs

There are 4 IHSS programs:

  1. The IHSS Residual (IHSS-R) Program is for people who are not eligible for full-scope Medi-Cal. It provides a maximum of 283 hours of services per month for people with severe disabilities and a maximum of 195 hours for people with disabilities that are not severe.
  1. The Personal Care Services Program (PCSP) is for people withfull-scope Medi-Cal who are:
    • Adults who get care services from a parent, or
    • Adults who don’t have a spouse to provide services, or
    • Children under 18 who don’t have a parent to provide services.

Severely and non-severely disabled people can get up to 283 hours of services per month, including protective supervision.

  1. The IHSS Plus Option (IPO) Program is for people who get services from a spouse or parent (for people under age 18), or who get restaurant meal allowance or advance pay. The program provides a maximum of 195 to 283 hours of services per month, depending on the severity of the impairment.
  2. The Community First Choice Option (CFCO) Program is an alternative for PCSP and IPO recipients. CFCO provides home and community-based attendant services and supports, including help with household chores, personal care services, paramedical services, and protective supervision. Severely and non-severely disabled people can get up to 283 hours of services per month, including protective supervision.

Hours per Week for Services

There are limits on how many IHSS hours can be used for certain services.


Maximum Hours


IHSS Service Limits

Domestic chores

6 hours per month

Children usually are not eligible for IHSS domestic chores

Laundry services

1 hour per week

1.5 hours if you have to use a laundromat

Food shopping

1 hour per week

Other shopping and errands

.5 hours per week

For more information about these service limits, see the IHSS fact sheet on Functional Index Rankings and Hourly Task Guidelines.

Note: If you can show that you need more hours than what is listed above, you may qualify to get it. You must tell your IHSS worker about this additional need during the needs assessment process.

Protective supervision hours will be provided for up to 195 hours per month or 283 hours, depending on the severity of the impairment and the person’s IHSS program.

IHSS for Children

If you’re a child under age 18, you can get IHSS in different ways, depending on your living situation.

If you live with at least one parent, you can pay someone other than your parent to provide IHSS if:

  • Your parents are absent because of employment, education, or training for vocational purposes.
  • Your parents are physically or mentally unable to perform the needed services
  • Your parents are absent because of ongoing medical, dental or other health-related treatment, or
  • A combination of the above.
  • Note: If your parents must be absent to go shopping, do other essential errands, or take care of your siblings, you can pay another person for IHSS for up to 8 hours per week.

If you live with at least one parent, your parent can be paid to do IHSS if:

  • Your parent has no full-time employment or can’t get full-time employment because of the need to provide you with IHSS; and
  • No other suitable provider is available.
  • Note: If you don’t get the IHSS your parent is supposed to provide, you may require inappropriate out-of-home placement. That means you wouldn’t live in your own home with your parent anymore.

If you live with both parents, one of your parents can be paid to do IHSS only when:

  • Your other parent cannot provide the services because they are working, getting an education, or are physically or mentally unable to provide the services.
    • If your other parent cannot provide services because they are working or getting an education, the parent providing the services can only get paid for them during the hours when the other parent is working or studying.

IHSS in the Workplace

You can use IHSS personal care services to help you get, keep, or return to work. IHSS that can be performed in the workplace includes meal preparation and cleanup, personal care services (except routine bed baths), and paramedical services. IHSS hours cannot be used for assistance with college courses or vocational training.

To use IHSS personal assistance hours at the workplace, you must first contact your IHSS worker and specify the number of hours and services you need.

Note: You can request to transfer IHSS hours to the workplace but you cannot request additional hours specifically for use at the workplace.


You currently get 80 hours of IHSS for use at your home. You request 20 hours of service for use at your workplace. Your caseworker may approve those 20 hours, but if that happens, you will only get 60 hours of IHSS at home.

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