Assembly lawmakers this week called for the rejection to changes to a Medcaid program that helps patients to hire caregivers and avoid becoming residents of nursing homes. 

At issue are changes to funding for services under the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program. The program helps providers hire caregivers, including family, friends, neighbors, or a home health aide, allowing them to remain at home in the process. 

"CDPAP has grown in popularity during the pandemic as people sought to stay out of nursing homes due to the high infection and death rates there," the lawmakers wrote in a letter to Assembly Health Committee Chairman Richard Gottfried. 

The lawmakers want the final state budget agreement, expected to pass next week, to put the cuts to the program aside. 

"Due to COVID-19, we respectfully ask that the Assembly support a delay in the implementation of the [Department of Health's] plan in the upcoming budget," they wrote. "More than ever, consumers want to receive supportive care in their homes, as opposed to nursing home care."