The following is a short FAQ document to help customers of Independence Northwest understand upcoming changes to both Personal Support Worker wages and brokerage customer plan benefit caps. Customers will be receiving paper notifications via mail regarding these changes as well.

What’s Happening?
Personal Support Workers (PSWs,) the majority of providers serving Independence Northwest’s customer base, are receiving a 1.25% increase to their wages effective April 1st, 2013.

Brokerage customers are receiving a 1.25% increase to their benefit cap (how much they are eligible for) effective April 1st, 2013. You may view the state’s newly published Benefit Level Matrix here. (This excludes those who are at Full Base Plus + ADL funding. They will not receive an increase to their benefit cap.)

Why Is This Happening?
This pay increase is a result of House Bill 3618 and the 2011/2013 Collective Bargaining Agreement  (CBA) between the Oregon Home Care Commission and SEIU. The House Bill and CBA require that no loss in service occur for our customers as a result of implementing this increase.

Will My Plan (ISP) Need to be Revised?
No. The State has created a revision form that will be attached to your ISP, allowing for the increase in funding to both your Personal Support Worker(s) and your benefit cap. This will happen at Independence Northwest’s office and will not require any action from you or your legal representative.

Do I Have to Give My PSW a Raise?
Yes. It is required. If you have questions or concerns, you should contact either SEIU or the Oregon Home Care Commission since this is their Collective Bargaining Agreement. Independence Northwest is required by contract to carry out the terms of the agreement.

How Do I Know If My Provider is a Personal Support Worker?
Most providers are considered PSWs. Certain providers who perform services such as Behavior Supports are not PSWs and will receive no increase. You may learn more about who is/isn’t a PSW by reviewing this state transmittal.

Does This Change How Much PSWs May Make Permanently?
Yes. The State has published a new set of Rate Ranges, effective 04.01.2013. Click here for details.

Will the Provider Organization I Contract with Receive an Increase?
No. This increase is specific to those under the PSW designation. Provider Organizations will not receive an increase and the rate ranges will not be adjusted up for them.

Have Additional Questions?
Check out  the State’s transmittal for all known details. If you still have questions, please call your Personal Agent at 503.546.2950 and we’ll do our best to get you answers or connect you with those who have answers.