Respite is defined as a temporary break for family and individual caregivers and may include in-home care, companionship or outings. The Montana Lifespan Respite program provides a break for Montana families caring for their loved ones.
The Montana Lifespan Respite program received $800,000 in grant funding awarded to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) in the fall of 2018. This funding continues for three years and will increase the use of the respite voucher program. Funding has been set aside specifically to assist those caring for individuals with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
The program allows a self-directed, person-centered approach giving the primary caregiver flexibility, which is especially important in rural areas of the state. Participants may go through an agency that employs respite providers, hire a private respite provider or use a combination of both. Participants in the program are provided access to apply for funds and receive referrals to other resources and information on how to find a respite provider if family or friends is not an option. The maximum amount allowed through the voucher program is $600 per calendar year.