The At Home Program - Eligibility and Application
Last Updated: July 27, 2023
The At Home Program is designed to support children and teens with a severe disability or complex health care needs – find out about the application and eligibility requirements below.
For information about the medical benefits that the program may provide, please see the At Home Program Guide or find out more at the Medical Benefits website below. If your child or a child you are supporting is already eligible for the program, please visit this webpage for information about requesting benefits.
- Medical Benefits for Children and Teens with Complex Health Needs - Province of British Columbia (gov.bc.ca)
As announced in Budget 2023, the maximum hourly billing rates for the School Aged Extended Therapy program have been increased. Effective April 1st the maximum hourly billing rates for occupational therapists, physio therapists and speech language therapists have increased from $80 to $160 per hour to a maximum of $5760 per year. The maximum hourly billing rates for therapy assistants has increased from $40 to $60 per hour. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available.
Apply for the At Home Program
Note for people living in the areas in and around Prince Rupert/Haida Gwaii, Smithers, Terrace or Kelowna: There is a different application process to access At Home Program Medical Benefits for families living in these areas. If you live in one of these areas, please use the link to the pilot areas At Home Program Medical Benefits application process.
The process for other parts of the province is as follows:
Step 1: With help from a doctor, complete the At Home Program Application (PDF).
Step 2: Mail or fax the application to your local At Home Program Regional Office (PDF).
Step 3: After your application is received, the program will contact you to arrange for an in-home assessment of your child or teen's abilities in four functional activities of daily living (eating, dressing, toileting and washing). The assessment may also include:
- Contact with other health care providers about the child or teen’s needs and abilities
- Observing the child or teen in another setting
Parents will receive a copy of the assessment once it's completed.
Step 4: After the assessment is completed, a regional committee reviews the application and assessment and makes an eligibility recommendation to the At Home Program.
Step 5: Parents are sent a letter with the final decision, and, if the child or teen is eligible for the program, a children and youth with special needs (CYSN) social worker will follow up to discuss the family’s needs and other available services.
Effective April 2022, additional funding will be made available for at home medical equipment for eligible families.
Find out about the medical items, equipment and services available for eligible children and teens enrolled in the At Home Program:
School-Aged Extended Therapy (SAET)
Occupational and physiotherapy services are available to help children and teens be independent and reach educational goals while at school.
- Read the info sheet (PDF)
If you live in the Central Okanagan or the North Coast / Bulkley Nechako areas, you have options for how your family accesses SAET-related supports and services. For more information, go to the following link: Service Delivery Choice for families in Prince Rupert/Haida Gwaii, Smithers, Terrace, or Kelowna.
Temporary Admission Process
A temporary admission process for the At Home Program continues to be in place if an AHP assessor is not available due to redeployment. This process will remain an option until March 2025.
If your child is likely to be eligible for the At Home Program and appears to meet the AHP eligibility criteria, they can be temporarily admitted without an assessment. Children currently on the AHP will maintain their current eligibility until assessors become available. To apply to the AHP, you must:
- Apply to the AHP using the AHP Application Form found on the AHP website;
- Provide supportive documentation from a regulated health professional (e.g. Physical Therapist or Pediatrician) describing the child’s functional need for support for daily living activities (eating, dressing, bathing and toileting);
- Send your application to your AHP regional office.
Please note: Once nursing support services has fully resumed At Home program assessments, your child/youth must undergo an At Home program assessment to maintain eligibility.
The AHP admission processes are unchanged for urgent admissions. Eligibility committees and regional advisors will maintain regular processes for urgent admissions.
These admissions will come to the Medical Benefits program as “urgent admits” and will need to be tracked by CYSN social workers for follow-up AHP assessments.