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FAQ: What to do if DOH Calls?

It has been brought to CDPAANYS’ attention that your advocacy is attracting the Governor’s attention – so let’s keep up the momentum!

Several individuals have been personally contacted by a representative from the Department of Health after sending a letter to Governor Cuomo urging him to #SaveCDPA. These individuals had no prior relationship with the Department, and their contact information was pulled from the letter campaign. We expect more of you will be contacted, and ask that you please notify CDPAANYS and/or your fiscal intermediary if and when this happens.

Please read the following FAQ for more information on this:

Someone who says they are from the Department of Health called me to tell me my services will not be affected. Is this real?
Yes. Several consumers have told us they were contacted by someone from DOH. This means your letters to the Governor are being heard!

Can the State retaliate against me for sending a letter to the Governor about CDPA program cuts?
No. As a New Yorker, you are free to express your personal concerns to your elected officials. This includes Governor Cuomo. Neither the state or your plan can take any action against you because you chose to exercise your Constitutional rights.

Am I required to provide any information or speak to a state agency employee who contacts me?
No, you are not required to do anything. If you are uncomfortable speaking with the representative, do not take the call. However, we would ask that you tell CDPAANYS or your fiscal intermediary that you were contacted by the Department, even if you did not speak directly with the representative. You can let us know by e-mailing or calling 518-813-9537.

How can I help advocate for CDPA if someone from the State contacts me?
You can share how the cuts are affecting you personally. This could include issues with wage cuts, overtime being reduced, or you needing to change plans/FIs.

Why won’t they answer my questions? Are they hiding something?
The representative’s role is to try and uphold the reputation of the Department of Health. They will be unlikely to address specific concerns – and unlikely to admit the reimbursement cuts are affecting consumers’ services.

The DOH representative said that my services would not be cut? Why is what they are saying different from what you are saying?
The Department of Health has had one talking point since January, when they first proposed these cuts: that no consumer services or PA wages would be impacted. Unfortunately, the reality of a 16% cut to this program is now being felt. Wages and services are undeniably being impacted. While your authorized hours may not be cut by your plan, the loss of overtime and worker wage cuts forced by these cuts are very real, and are the direct result of the drastic cuts. DOH is trying to spin things in a way to protect the Governor. The last thing they want is for consumers to continue to be upset. These calls mean your advocacy is working!

What should I do if I am called by DOH?
This is really up to you. Remember, it is not worth arguing with the DOH representative on the phone. You can use the opportunity to write another letter to the Governor, letting him know how you feel about the call, and that you are disappointed that, rather than fixing the problem with the program that his cuts are causing, his DOH is instead calling consumers to tell them that the cuts to overtime and wages they are experiencing are not really happening, and that you are basically being told to believe DOH over your actual experience.