Consumer and Counselor Experiences in the Arkansas IndependentChoices Program. Consumer Satisfaction with IndependentChoices

01/01/2004

Ninety-six percent of respondents to the evaluation's nine-month follow-up interview (including disenrollees) said they would "recommend the [IndependentChoices] program to others who wanted more control over personal care services." Among respondents who received the allowance, more than half (56 percent) said the allowance improved the quality of their lives a great deal, and another 25 percent said it improved their lives somewhat. (Nineteen percent reported it made no difference, and only two individuals reported the program made their lives worse.) Nonelderly consumers were more likely to say it improved their lives a great deal (63 percent, versus 53 percent of elderly consumers) (Appendix Table A.22a).

Respondents primarily cited IndependentChoices as improving the quality of their lives by enabling them to (1) purchase or repair equipment or modify homes (18 percent); (2) purchase personal care supplies, nutritional supplements, and other care- related supplies (16 percent); (3) purchase medications that Medicaid did not cover (14 percent); and (4) choose their caregivers (14 percent). Elderly consumers were also somewhat more likely to cite getting enough care or care at the right time as the ways the allowance improved their lives (11 percent, versus 6 percent for nonelderly consumers), but elderly and nonelderly consumers cited similar improvements otherwise (Appendix Table A.22a and Table A.22b).

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