Respite gives short-term relief to families dealing with the stress and around-the-clock responsibility of caring for a family member with a disability. Respite can give you a chance to rest, relax, and recharge your energy. It’s an important way for caregivers to take care of themselves.
ECI Respite is part of the Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) program run by the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS). You must be enrolled in ECI to receive these respite services.
Be aware that ECI has limited funds for respite services. Funding may be available if no other community respite services are available. If funding is available, you will pay the respite provider yourself and submit a voucher to the ECI program for reimbursement. Here are some important points about respite through ECI:
- Services are limited to 20 hours of respite per month
- Families select and supervise the provider
- There may be a waiting list for respite services
- There may be a co-pay based on family size and income
Tell your ECI Service Coordinator (or any staff person you see on a regular basis) if you are interested in respite services—don’t wait for them to bring it up with you.
The Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) has programs that offer respite services. The Texas Inventory of Respite Services will help you search for respite providers. Each provider record contains helpful information about the services provided, languages spoken, care specialties, and contact information.
The ABC’s of Respite from the National Respite Network and Resource Center can also help you learn about respite and find respite and crisis care services near you.