COVID-19 extension of emergency caregiver funding and foster care rate flexibilities

Emergency caregivers with whom a child has been placed pending approval of the home as a Resource Family or Tribally Approved Home are eligible for emergency caregiver funding on behalf of the child for up to 120 days while the application is being processed.  On a case-by-case bases, emergency caregiver funding can be extended up to 365 days.  Effective April 16, 2021, through June 30, 2021, emergency caregiver funding can continue beyond 365 days because of delays in approval as a Resource Family or Tribally Approved home caused by COVID-19.  Between April 16, 2021 and June 30, 2021, counties cannot discontinue emergency care funding if approval exceeds 365 days because of COVID-19.

The California Department of Social Services has authorized a higher payment rate because of COVID-19 between April 17, 2021 and June 30, 2021.  The higher rate is available which the child or another member of the household requires isolation or quarantine because of COVID-19, and as a result there are increased supervision needs, or the child requires a new placement because of COVID-19.  The higher rate is available to emergency caregivers.

COVID-19 has impacted capacity for Short-Term Residential Therapeutic Program placements.  If COVID-19 has impacted the ability to received Short-Term Residential Therapeutic Program level of care, counties can negotiate a higher rate with Family Foster Agencies who are willing to accept a child assessed as needing short-term residential therapeutic program level of care and is able to provide individualized exceptional care, supervision, and services.  (ACL 21-60, May 21, 2021.)