Frequently Asked Questions

About MassOptions

What is MassOptions?

MassOptions is a free resource linking elders, individuals with disabilities, caregivers, and family members to services that help you or a loved one live independently in the setting of your choice. We help individuals avoid the frustration of calling multiple agencies and navigating various networks.

What does MassOptions do?

We provide information about and connections to community services and supports.  By linking callers to such information, we work to empower individuals to make informed choices about care they may need or want. Trained specialists at MassOptions give individuals fast, personalized attention. All one needs to do is tell our trained specialists about themselves or what they might need to live independently. A caller can even stay on the line while we connect them with an appropriate community resource or organization.

MassOptions, Partners, and Services

What types of services and supports might someone be able to access through MassOptions?

MassOptions can help individuals link to information about a broad range of services including:

    • Caregiver Support Services
    • Care Management Services
    • Community Life Services
    • Coordinated Care Programs
    • Day Services
    • Employment and Training Services
    • Equipment and Supplies
    • Financial Assistance Services
    • Food and Nutrition Services
    • Health and Therapeutic Services
    • Housing
    • In-Home Supports
    • Mental Health Services
    • Personal Care Services
    • Protective Services
    • Substance Abuse Services
    • Transition Assistance
    • Transportation Services

Who sponsors MassOptions? Who is behind it?

MassOptions is a service of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS). It partners with a strong statewide network including agencies in communities throughout Massachusetts that have experience working with elders, individuals with disabilities, caregivers and families such as those associated with the Aging and Disability Resource Consortia (ADRC) and state agencies that provide services to improve access to community long-term services and supports.

How is MassOptions funded?

In March of 2014, Massachusetts was selected to receive a Balancing Incentive Program (BIP) grant from the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. This grant allows States to increase access to non-institutional long-term services and supports (LTSS).

BIP helps States transform their long-term care systems by:

    • Lowering costs through improved systems performance and efficiency
    • Enhancing consumer experiences and satisfaction by creating tools and processes to help consumers with assessment and care planning
    • Improving quality measurement and oversight

BIP also provides new ways to serve more people in home and community-based settings in keeping with the integration mandate of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as required by the Olmstead decision. BIP was created by the Affordable Care Act of 2010.

BIP provides additional federal funding to States that make changes that create more options for  people who need long term services and supports to receive what they need and want in the settings and communities of their choosing and to reduce nursing facility usage.

Contact Information and Hours

Who should contact MassOptions?

MassOptions is a free referral service for elders, individuals with disabilities, caregivers, and family members looking to get information about and referral to community services and supports in Massachusetts.  

How can someone contact MassOptions? What are the hours?

Contact MassOptions by calling the toll free number at 1-844-422-6277 or chat online at the MassOptions website where a trained specialist will provide referrals to services that best fit your individual needs. The MassOptions call center and online chat are available 7 days a week from 8AM to 8PM.

What if I want to contact MassOptions after hours?

After hours, individuals can visit the MassOptions website 24-hours a day, 7 days a week to complete an easy online referral form. When individuals complete the referral form they will be directed to an agency or organization in their community that can best meet their needs. If preferred, an individual can request a “call back” and a MassOptions trained specialist will contact them within 24 hours.

Still Need More Information?

If you have specific questions that were not answered here, please contact us at the Balancing Incentive Program

What agencies and organizations will MassOptions refer me to?

MassOptions works with a strong statewide network of home and community-based long-term services and supports (LTSS) as well as facility-based LTSS. The Aging and Disability Resource Consortia (ADRC), which are local organizations that work with elders and individuals with disabilities, serve as essential partners in MassOptions.

ADRCs are organized into 11 geographical regions throughout the state. Each ADRC involves a variety of local organizations, including Aging Services Access Points, Area Agencies on Aging, and Independent Living Centers, as well as state agencies. An ADRC will help you access community long-term services and supports (LTSS). 

Each ADRC provides individuals of all ages and abilities with reliable information about home and community-based LTSS, as well as facility-based long term care.  ADRC agencies follow principles of consumer choice, person-centered decision-making, cultural competency and accessibility. For more information on how an ADRC and state agencies can assist you with services, please visit the MassOptions website.

Will MassOptions be able to communicate with callers who speak languages besides English?

Trained specialists will be able to communicate with callers in both English and Spanish during hours of operation, 7 days a week from 8AM to 8PM. In addition, translation services will be available during these hours of operation to support other languages, as needed.

Call-Center and Specialists

How are specialists at MassOptions trained?

Specialists at MassOptions are trained with a comprehensive curriculum that ensures they are competent in the following areas:

    • Massachusetts long-term services and supports (LTSS) network
    • Agencies and organizations that make up the Massachusetts LTSS network
    • Customer Service
    • Cultural competency
    • Alliance of Information and Referral Systems Certification - a professional credentialing program for individuals working within the Information and Referral sector
    • Technology and tools used during a call, chat, and/or referral

All specialists at MassOptions must complete a written and practical certification exam before communicating with callers or those utilizing online chat services.

Where is the call-center located?

The MassOptions call-center and its trained specialists are located right here in Massachusetts and they are here to help you! Have questions about your personal needs? Having a real person on the other end of the line can make all the difference. Contact MassOptions, toll free, at 1-844-422-6277 or chat on-line with a representative 7 days a week from 8AM – 8PM at the MassOptions website.

Promoting MassOptions

How is MassOptions being promoted to individuals in need throughout the Commonwealth?

A public awareness campaign including advertisements on television, radio, public transit, social media, and online will begin on November 2, 2015.

The advertisements will promote the toll-free phone number (1-844-422-6277) for the MassOptions call-center as well as the MassOptions website.

This first phase of the media campaign is a staggered 13-week state-wide effort and will feature advertisements in both English and Spanish. Additional campaign phases are being considered and will be determined based on what we learn from the first phase.

In addition, MassOptions will sponsor and participate in the following activities:

    • Launch Events MassOptions will conduct a series of launch events in high-traffic areas across the state to promote MassOptions.
    • Targeted Outreach MassOptions will participate in conferences or events that serve elders and individuals with disabilities.
    • Material development and distribution MassOptions has created a series of print materials (i.e., posters, brochures, etc.) and branded “Give-Aways” (i.e., pens, post-it notes, tote bags). These items will be distributed to partner organizations, as well as to various community locations where elders and individuals with disabilities are likely to visit.

Does MassOptions have a Facebook page?

Yes. Be sure to visit and “Like Us” on our Facebook page. This page will provide information about various long-term services and supports, highlight partner agencies and organizations across the state, and inform individuals about relevant news and upcoming events.

The MassOptions Difference

How is MassOptions different than other resources for elders and individuals with disabilities?

MassOptions is a centralized access point for individuals of all ages and disabilities. MassOptions helps individuals avoid the frustration of calling multiple agencies and navigating various networks. The launch of the MassOptions call-center and website makes access to community services and supports easier than ever for those who have struggled to find the resources that best fit their needs.

I am already receiving long-term services and supports. Is there a benefit to me contacting MassOptions?

If you are already receiving services and are connected to an agency or organization, there is no need for you to contact MassOptions. This service is for those who have questions about what types of services are available or who do not know where to go for long-term services and supports in the Commonwealth.  If you have questions in the future, please contact us.

I currently use 1-800-AGE-INFO, how is this service different?

1-800-AGE-INFO’s goal is to provide individuals with information to help them make decisions concerning long term services and supports for Massachusetts elders, family members and caregivers to help them find the resources they need to maintain their independence and to improve quality of life.

MassOptions is a service that aims to improve access to services and supports for individuals of all ages and disabilities. MassOptions is not limited by age, income, or disability type.  The goal of MassOptions is to ensure that those who seek information and referral benefit from the “No Wrong Door “approach.

Cost and Insurance

Is there a cost associated with working with MassOptions?

No. This referral service and the MassOptions toll-free phone number are free.

What if I don’t have health insurance?

MassOptions is a free referral resource service for all individuals with or without health insurance. If you do not have MassHealth, Medicare or private insurance and are in need of services, a MassOptions specialist will refer you to an agency that will help you determine how best to access services and health insurance.

 

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