In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) For IHSS Care Recipients

Find out how to receive in-home supportive services from the City and County of San Francisco.

IHSS care recipients can obtain services at home from a family member, a friend, or a provider referred by IHSS. Services can include assistance with bathing, dressing, meal preparation and clean up, bowel and bladder care, light housekeeping, laundry, and shopping.

Although IHSS pays for the services, care recipients are responsible for hiring, supervising, and scheduling their care providers, for signing provider timesheets, and for firing the provider if the services are not performed according to the recipient’s specifications.

How to Become a Care Recipient


Meet eligibility criteria

  • Live at home or in a shelter, but not in a board and care facility, nursing home, or hospital.
  • Receive Medi-Cal or be eligible for Medi-Cal.
  • Demonstrate a need for help with activities of daily living.

Apply in one of the following ways:

Once your application is reviewed, you must qualify for Medi-Cal. If you already receive SSI and/or Medi-Cal, skip to Step 4.


Qualify for Medi-Cal

  • Expect an eligibility worker to contact you to schedule an interview.
  • Plan for this interview to take up to 90 minutes and to show proof of income and resources (bank statements).

Get assessed by a social worker

  • Once your Medi-Cal is established, expect an IHSS social worker to contact you about scheduling a home visit for assessing your ability to perform activities of daily living. You may be asked to perform simple tasks, such as range-of-motion demonstrations.
  • You may also be asked for a list of your prescribed medications and doctors’ information. 

For more information, view the IHSS Services and Assessment video (English | Español | 中文).


Submit the Health Care Certification Form SOC 873

  • Ask a licensed medical professional to verify your need for IHSS by filling out Form SOC 873.
  • A completed SOC 873 must be on file in order for your services to begin. You can mail or fax your SOC 873 to IHSS or give a copy to the IHSS social worker during the initial home visit.
  • You will receive the assessment results from IHSS by mail.

If approved, IHSS will tell you the types of services, start date, and the number of IHSS hours per month that have been authorized for you. If denied services, you can appeal the decision.


Find a care provider

Learn more from the videos: Hiring a Provider (English | Español | 中文and Supervising a Care Provider (English | Español | 中文).

More Information

To check the status of your IHSS case or the IHSS Social Worker assigned to your case, visit our Client Information System.

Learn more about navigating IHSS and finding, hiring, and supervising your provider in these resources:

Find out about in-home services for those who are ineligible for IHSS by visiting: