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Failure to Comply: The Disconnect Between Design and Implementation in HRA’s WeCARE Program A Research Project By Community Voices Heard. Presentation Format. WeCARE Program Overview Research Design Research Findings WeCARE Client Testimonies Recommendations. WeCARE

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slide1

Failure to Comply:The Disconnect Between Design and Implementation in HRA’s WeCARE ProgramA Research Project By Community Voices Heard

presentation format
Presentation Format
  • WeCARE Program Overview
  • Research Design
  • Research Findings
  • WeCARE Client Testimonies
  • Recommendations
slide3
WeCARE

Program Overview

what is wecare
What is WeCARE?

Wellness, Comprehensive Assessment,

Rehabilitation and Employment

  • HRA program to help PA recipients

with potential barriers to employment

to attain their highest levels

of health and self-sufficiency.

  • Two primary contracting organizations:

FEGS and Arbor E & T

what is wecare supposed to do
What Is WeCARE Supposed to Do?
  • Individualized and Inclusive Approach
  • Comprehensive Assessment
  • Specialized Services
why pay attention to wecare
Why Pay Attention to WeCARE
  • High Cost: $201,465,000 allocation

over 3 years

  • Large Population: 55.7% of the caseload is partially or completely

unable to work

  • Hard to Reach: Many with multiple and complex barriers to employment
data source categories
Data Source Categories
  • HRA Documents and Meetings
      • Policy Directives, Contracts, Vendor Guidelines, Testimony
  • Client Conversations
      • Outreach workers held 7-10 minute conversations with 727 clients at 10 WeCARE sites
  • Focus Groups
      • Seven 2.5 hour sessions, 40 participants
  • Client Interviews
      • 7 in-depth interviews conducted
slide11
Research

Findings

overall finding
Overall Finding

Good Program Design

=

Good Practice

design and implementation divide
Design and Implementation Divide
  • Assessments
  • Escalating Outreach
  • Federal Disability Benefits
  • Job Search/ Job Placement
  • Program Monitoring and Evaluation
finding assessments
Finding: Assessments

Design Vs

  • Comprehensive
  • Individualized

Practice

  • Poor Quality
  • Low Completion Rate
incomplete assessments
Incomplete Assessments

19 percent of

those referred for a WeCARE Assessment did not complete it

poor assessment quality
Poor Assessment Quality
  • Long waits
  • Short visits with Doctors
  • Recommendations and Documents from Personal Doctors are Ignored
finding escalating outreach
Finding: Escalating Outreach

Program DesignVs

  • Help clients meet

requirements

  • Letters, phone calls, contact with family, home visits
  • No sanctions until all

outreach has failed

Practice

  • No outreach
  • Limited Communication
  • Lots of sanctions and case closures
finding federal disability benefits
Finding: Federal Disability Benefits

Program DesignVs

  • Vendors get $$ to help

clients obtain federal

benefits (SSI/ SSDI)

  • Focus on trying to shift cost from NY City and State to Feds

Practice

  • Clients unaware of assistance
  • Low success rates
  • Many eligible clients

not applying

wecare client testimony
WeCARE Client Testimony

Terrance McSween

finding job search job placement services
Finding: Job Search/ Job Placement Services

Program DesignVs

  • Specialized Work Experience

Program sites

  • Individual Plan for Employment based on work experience and career goals

Practice

  • One-size fits all
  • WEP not specialized
  • Low employment placement rate
job placement
Job Placement

Only 5.4% of those who are employable with limitations obtained employment

finding program monitoring
Finding: Program Monitoring

Program DesignVs

  • Outside organization to conduct quarterly evaluation
  • Organization should be independent of HRA
  • Ensure quality, effectiveness and integrity of Services

Practice

  • Only 1 evaluation to date
  • Only medical facilities evaluated
  • No measures of effectiveness
assessments
Assessments

HRA Should:

  • Create hotline for questions

about assessment process

  • Allow clients to see personal

doctors for assessment

escalating outreach
EscalatingOutreach

HRA Should:

  • create a mandatory 1 month wait period before a case is sanctioned or closed.
  • Create WeCARE liaison at Job Centers to oversee outreach
federal disability benefits
Federal Disability Benefits

HRA and WeCARE Vendors Should:

  • Subcontract the provision of federal disability services to an organization with expertise
  • Align WeCARE assessment with eligibility criteria for Federal Disability Benefits
job preparation
Job Preparation
  • End unpaid Work Experience Program (WEP)
  • Replace WEP with paid supportive work programs linked to individual’s interest and experience
monitoring and transparency
Monitoring and Transparency

HRA Should:

  • Establish a WeCARE participant advisory board
  • Hire independent organization to conduct evaluation of ALL WeCARE services and program components
  • Post quarterly monitoring reports and all Vendor statistics on HRA website
slide32

Failure to Comply:

The Disconnect Between Design and Implementation

in HRA\'s WeCARE Program

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