Family Care

Family Care is a Medicaid long-term care program for older adults and adults with disabilities. The goal is to get members the services they need to live in a home setting when possible.

Apply for Family Care

What is Family Care

Family Care offers long-term care under one benefit program. Long-term care is a service or support a person may need because:

  • They have a disability.
  • They are older.
  • They have a lasting (chronic) illness.

Disability, age, or illness may get in the way of a person being able to do daily tasks:

  • Bathe
  • Get dressed
  • Go to work
  • Make meals
  • Pay bills

Partners

There are two main groups that work with Family Care members:

What services are covered

Family Care offers long-term care services to its members. Services can range from help with daily tasks at home to mental health.

Learn more about Family Care benefits.

To get Family Care services:

  1. Potential members contact their local ADRC to find out if they are eligible.
  2. Members choose an MCO and enroll to get their services.

Who is eligible

To enroll in Family Care, you must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older.
  • Be a frail elder or an adult with a disability.
  • Be eligible for Medicaid.
  • Be functionally eligible. The Long Term Care Functional Screen helps confirm eligibility.
  • Have a long-term care condition that will last more than 90 days.

People with dementia and a terminal condition also may qualify.

How Family Care works

With Family Care, Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) pays MCOs monthly for each member they serve. The MCO uses the funds to find and schedule services for its members. MCOs have a full list of long-term care providers. They make sure services for members are top quality.

Who to contact for help

If you have questions, either:

Program history

Family Care has been around since 1999. It began as an effort to re-do Wisconsin’s long-term care system. The program has made a lot of progress over time:

  • 1999—The Family Care program starts.
  • 2000—Family Care begins in five counties. They include Fond du Lac, La Crosse, Milwaukee, Portage, and Richland.
  • 2007—Family Care expands to more counties.
  • 2010—Family Care serves more than 30,000 members in 56 counties.
  • 2013—DHS research shows that using Family Care across the state saves $34.7 million. It also gets more services to people who are older or have a disability.
  • 2015—Governor Walker and the state expand Family Care to the entire state. The wait list ends. Family Care costs less than other programs but still gives quality care.
  • 2018—The last county in the state gets Family Care.
  • Today—Family Care serves more than 55,000 members across the state. View Family Care enrollment numbers.

Related topics

Last Revised: July 11, 2022