BATH - Senior citizens qualified for Medicaid and returning to their homes after a stay in a nursing home may qualify for home health care through a new state program in 2020.

The program was originally scheduled to begin in April.

Steuben County Department of Social Services Commissioner Kathryn Muller said the program will include an emergency response system for individuals, assistance in accessing speech and occupational therapy, and activities of daily living including self-care, grocery shopping and laundry.

The program also will help individuals who require assistive adaptive technology or mechanical aides, such as chair lifts, she said.

Muller said her department will work with the county’s Public Health Department to provide daily supervision of cases and ensure backup providers.

DSS also will refer people to the county’s Office For the Aging, Muller said.

“We’re always glad to help our seniors in any way we can,” said Steuben County Office for the Aging Director Patty Baroody. “There are many more options available today than there were years ago, and elder care has become a very complex care system. Our staff is trained to simplify the process and promote safety and quality of life to those we serve.”

Muller said nursing homes can make direct referrals through the state program and the state also will provide DSS with a list of potential clients.