Absolute Status Update 11/2/20

Valued Guardians and Providers, 

Firstly, I want to apologize for the delayed communication from us regarding the SpokeChoice switchover. We have been waiting for updates from our web developer and AHCCCS. AHCCCS announced new, last-minute mandate requirements for all operating systems. Due to this, it has delayed our ability to move over to the new operating system. 

Once we have the new date of switchover, we will promptly communicate with you. This is a top priority and we will ensure this move over is as seamless as possible. 

In the meantime, please continue using DDReports.com for your billing. 

I am currently working on setting up a live Q&A Zoom session to answer your questions and help ease anxiety over the new changes. Once I have it scheduled, I will send the information out to you. 

We appreciate your patience and support through this. Thank you for all you do. 

Sincerely, 

Your Absolute HCBS Family

Absolute Status Update 10/14/20

Dear Valued Families and Providers, 

We know that 2020, so far, has been extremely interesting, to say the least. You are all nothing short of superheroes and have accomplished the impossible. We want you to know how proud we are at Absolute HCBS to serve such resilient human beings. 

We have a few upcoming changes that we wanted to proactively inform you about. 

As of Thursday, November 5th, DDReports.com will be replaced with SpokeChoice.com.  SpokeChoice.com is a similar operating system to DDReports.com and is run by the same web developer. We are working diligently to create support and gather more information to share with you. We have been given very short notice about this change but we are excited to share and prepare you all for the new system. 

These changes needed to be made due to Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) regulations being enforced by AHCCCS.  All Agencies within the state of Arizona will be required to have 100% of their staff in compliance with EVV by January 1, 2021.  We understand some of you have had concerns with EVV in the past.  Please be assured we are prepared to fully support you through this transition with top of the line support and training. You all are our top priorities and we will ensure that all of your needs are met. We even have plans in place for those of you without smartphones or access to other forms of technology and SpokeChoice is fully customizable so we can tailor it to meet individual needs!

If you’re curious about learning more about EVV (Electronic Visit Verification), click here

Please keep in mind, we are not receiving additional funding or support from AHCCCS or DDD in order to make the mandated EVV transitions possible. However, we are excited to offer the chance of winning an iPad if actively participating in the new SpokeChoice system and integrated EVV. All staff and guardians utilizing the system correctly will be entered into the raffle and 4 winners will be selected. More detailed information regarding the iPad raffle will be announced soon! 

Although change and learning a new system is always a challenge, we are positive that the new program (SpokeChoice) will offer many advantages and will make all of our lives easier. Here are some exciting features SpokeChoice offers us: 

  • When a provider arrives at their scheduled shift, they will clock in. 
  • When a provider finishes their scheduled shift, they will clock out.
  • No more written/typed habilitation report forms! Habilitation data will be recorded when you clock out of a habilitation shift.
  • Guardians will no longer need to hassle with signing a physical timesheet! Guardians will approve worked hours via their own account on SpokeChoice.
  • Guardians will have access to a live balance of all authorizations. 
  • SpokeChoice is web browser integrated, you don’t need to mess with an app that needs to be updated. 
  • SpokeChoice is already EVV (Electronic Visit Verification) integrated. 
  • SpokeChoice can be utilized even if you don’t have access to technology.
  • SpokeChoice is more user friendly than DDReports

Support Absolute HCBS will be offering to aid in this transition: 

  • Page on our website solely dedicated to SpokeChoice and EVV support (currently under construction)
    • All training material will be accessible here at all times
    • Frequently Asked Questions will be answered here 
    • A direct chat line to SpokeChoice/EVV support will be located here
  • A dedicated phone line for direct SpokeChoice support (will be provided soon)
  • A dedicated email for direct SpokeChoice Support (techsupport@absolutehcbs.com)
  • 1:1 training available to any providers/guardians that need it
  • Live Zoom sessions scheduled several days a week for questions/training
  • Training pamphlets 
  • Training videos 

Our staff is working diligently to get everything to you. Please be on the lookout for more information and communication from us. Please feel free to respond to this email (techsupport@absolutehcbs.com) with any questions you may have. We can’t promise that we can answer them just yet, we will work on getting an answer to you as soon as possible. 

We appreciate you working with us and believing in us. You inspire us every day and push us to be better. Thank you for all you do! 

Sincerely, 

Your Absolute HCBS Family 

Frequently asked Questions

AHCCCS E.V.V. FAQ
FAQ for Live-In Caregivers
FAQ for EVV in AZ (General)

What if I don’t have the technology (cell phone, computer, tablet, internet, etc.) to utilize SpokeChoice and EVV (Electronic Visit Verification)?

The following exceptions are the only allowances given by AHCCCS in order to support those who may not be able to utilize EVV  The following information has been taken directly from the AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System) website (located at: https://www.azahcccs.gov/AHCCCS/Initiatives/EVV/).

The use of paper timesheets is allowable when limited to the following circumstances and when used in conjunction with a device that can independently verify the date/time of the service:

  • Individuals for whom both the DCW and the member live in geographic areas with limited, intermittent or no landline, cell, and internet service.
  • Individuals for whom the use of electronic devices would cause adverse physical or behavioral health side effects/symptoms
  • Individuals electing not to use other visit verification modalities on the basis of moral or religious grounds
  • Individuals with a live-in DCW or DCW accessible on-site 24 hours and for whom the use of other visit verification modalities would be burdensome

The member/designee and provider agency are required to sign a standardized AHCCCS attestation statement to document the allowance for the use of paper timesheets.

These are currently the only exceptions being given by AHCCCS.

Can I still use a paper timesheet?

Yes, but within certain guidelines set by AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System). The following information has been taken directly from the AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System) website (located at: https://www.azahcccs.gov/AHCCCS/Initiatives/EVV/):

The use of paper timesheets is allowable when limited to the following circumstances and when used in conjunction with a device that can independently verify the date/time of the service:

  • Individuals for whom both the DCW and the member live in geographic areas with limited, intermittent or no landline, cell, and internet service.
  • Individuals for whom the use of electronic devices would cause adverse physical or behavioral health side effects/symptoms
  • Individuals electing not to use other visit verification modalities on the basis of moral or religious grounds
  • Individuals with a live-in DCW or DCW accessible on-site 24 hours and for whom the use of other visit verification modalities would be burdensome

The member/designee and provider agency are required to sign a standardized AHCCCS attestation statement to document the allowance for the use of paper timesheets.

What is EVV (Electronic Visit Verification)?

EVV (Electronic Visit Verification) is the process of verifying in some fashion that the caregiver physically arrived at their scheduled shift for a client. For a more detailed explanation, please see the following information that has been taken directly from the AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System) website (located at https://www.azahcccs.gov/AHCCCS/Initiatives/EVV/):

Pursuant to Section 1903 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396b), also known as the 21st Century Cures Act, in order to prevent a reduction in the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP), AHCCCS is mandated to implement Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) for non-skilled in-home services (attendant care, personal care, homemaker, habilitation, respite) by January 1, 2020* and for in-home skilled nursing services (home health) by January 1, 2023.

*AHCCCS has received a one year approval to implement by January 1st, 2021.

The EVV system, must at a minimum, electronically verify the:

  1. Type of service performed
  2. Individual receiving the service
  3. Date of the service
  4. Location of service delivery
  5. Individual providing the service
  6. Time the service begins and ends
Is my provider geotagged for their entire shift?

No! The EVV (Electronic Visit Verification) mandate only requires a snapshot of the provider’s geolocation at the time of clock-in and clock-out. No other GPS information will be taken by the SpokeChoice program.

I am a parent provider, do I need two separate accounts to log my shifts and approve them?

No! SpokeChoice supports having multiple “roles” within one account. Parent providers will switch “roles” within their account between “Provider” and “Guardian” in order to clock-in/clock-out and approve their time.

What qualifies as an exemption to the EVV mandate?

There are currently no exemptions to the AHCCCS EVV mandate. The only allowance that can be made is allowing a provider to utilize a “token” or “fob” that is fixed within the consumer’s home. The “token” will display a set of numbers when activated. These numbers are recorded on a timesheet and serve as the EVV replacement. This is only allowable in certain situations.Those situations are listed here. The following information has been taken directly from the AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System) website (located at: https://www.azahcccs.gov/AHCCCS/Initiatives/EVV/).

The use of paper timesheets is allowable when limited to the following circumstances and when used in conjunction with a device that can independently verify the date/time of the service:

  • Individuals for whom both the DCW and the member live in geographic areas with limited, intermittent or no landline, cell, and internet service.
  • Individuals for whom the use of electronic devices would cause adverse physical or behavioral health side effects/symptoms
  • Individuals electing not to use other visit verification modalities on the basis of moral or religious grounds
  • Individuals with a live-in DCW or DCW accessible on-site 24 hours and for whom the use of other visit verification modalities would be burdensome

The member/designee and provider agency are required to sign a standardized AHCCCS attestation statement to document the allowance for the use of paper timesheets.

What is EVV (Electronic Visit Verification)?

EVV (Electronic Visit Verification) is the process of verifying in some fashion that the caregiver physically arrived at their scheduled shift for a client. For a more detailed explanation, please see the following information that has been taken directly from the AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Containment System) website (located at https://www.azahcccs.gov/AHCCCS/Initiatives/EVV/).

Pursuant to Section 1903 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396b), also known as the 21st Century Cures Act, in order to prevent a reduction in the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP), AHCCCS is mandated to implement Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) for non-skilled in-home services (attendant care, personal care, homemaker, habilitation, respite) by January 1, 2020* and for in-home skilled nursing services (home health) by January 1, 2023.

*AHCCCS has received a one year approval to implement by January 1st, 2021.

The EVV system, must at a minimum, electronically verify the:

  1. Type of service performed

2. Individual receiving the service

3. Date of the service

4. Location of service delivery

5. Individual providing the service

6. Time the service begins and ends

What devices can be utilized for SpokeChoice?

Any device that can be connected to the Internet.

What devices can be utilized for EVV (Electronic Visit Verification)?

Any device that can be connected to the Internet.

What is AutoVisit?

AutoVisit is the name of the EVV (Electronic Visit Verification) solution being utilized within SpokeChoice.

As a guardian, when do I approve my provider’s shifts via SpokeChoice?

Preferably shifts are reviewed and approved daily. We understand that this is not always possible. At a minimum, all shifts clocked by a provider must be approved by the 16th and 1st of every month to ensure the provider is paid on time. If the guardian fails to approve the providers shifts, the provider will not be paid on the originally scheduled date and will receive a paycheck during our late payroll.

As a provider, can I work with my client in different locations (i.e. the community)?

Yes, you can. The first time you clock in at a new location, your supervisor will confirm with the guardian that the location is an approved and appropriate location. After that, it will be saved within the SpokeChoice database and will appear as an approved location for all future shifts.

SpokeChoice Resources

We will be adding SpokeChoice resources and guides soon for our providers and members.

In the meantime, please feel free to share your questions and concerns with our Technical Support by emailing TechSupport@AbsoluteHCBS.com or utilizing our chat function.