FAQs from CDS Employers:

We are following any alerts and updates from HHS and if we become aware of information or resources that needs to be shared, we will send out via email and post on our website, and on Facebook.

We hope you all stay safe and well during this unprecedented situation. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions that we have received regarding the Corona Virus pandemic and how it affects your CDS Services.

Q. Am I allowed to have my CDS employee continue to work via video conference or teleconference to provide certain habilitation services such as communication, instruction, or prompting?

A. Please contact your Case Manager or Service Coordinator for guidance regarding this question. Since the FMSA is not a part of the client’s Service Planning Team we are not the authority to advise on what service tasks are approved in the Individual Service Plan (ISP) or Person Directed Plan (PDP). Your Case Manager or Service Coordinator can confirm for you if this is allowed based on your individual client’s plan.

Q. My child normally has increased weekly hours authorized when he is out of school. Now that the school break has been extended are we able to continue to use the increased schedule for out of school hours?

A. You would need to talk to your Service Coordinator or Case Manger to see if additional hours can possibly be approved and authorized. CDS can only approve to pay based on the current authorized weekly hours. If approved, your Service Coordinator or Case Manager will send us an updated authorization with added hours/emergency hours. If you get approval please let your CDS Service Advisor know so we know to expect a new authorization.

Q: - Due to my client's medically fragile condition I have concerns about having my care attendants continue to come into my home during the Corona Virus pandemic. I do not want to risk exposing my client. Am I allowed to temporarily suspend services until everything calms down?

A: - As the CDS employer it will be your decision as to whether you are choosing to have your attendant continue to provide care during this time or limit or restrict access from outside staff. We understand that the decision will be difficult and ultimately the health and wellbeing of our most fragile population is of the upmost importance.

Q: - My care provider is nervous about coming into work due to the Corona Virus pandemic, or my care provider is unable to come into work because they are ill or must remain home for other reasons. I rely on this care to assist with my client's daily living tasks needed to survive. What do I do?

A. - At this time this is a decision each individual employer and each individual employee must make. CDS employers should ensure that they have an Emergency Back Up Plan in place so that they know who they can contact in the event that their employee is no longer able to work and the client is left without services needed to survive on their own. You may wish to contact your case manager or service coordinator or call 211 for further assistance.

Q: - I do not want to leave my employee without pay for the time they are not able to work as they rely on their paychecks to survive. What options are there?

A. - employees who have been laid off or let go can file for unemployment benefits through the Texas Workforce Commission. The decision on whether unemployment would be approved or not is determined by the Texas Workforce Commission.

*Note: when an employee receives unemployment benefits the employer's future SUTA tax rate can be increased based on the amount the employee was awarded in unemployment benefits. This increase in taxes may result in a reduction to future employee hourly pay rates due to the increase in future SUTA taxes.

B. - If the CDS client has funds available in the budget for paid sick or vacation you may be able to cover some of the time missed. Keep in mind that if you are already paying your attendant the highest possible rate and did not allocate funds for paid time off the budget will need to be revised to allow for this added expense. The rate of pay will likely need to be lowered to cover the cost of adding paid time off as an employee benefit. If you have budget questions please email our office, but please be patient as we will have limited resources available, but will respond in the order in which requests are received.

*Note: Unused hours CANNOT be used to pay for any employee benefits including paid time off or bonus.