FAQ for Families

Is TSI part of the Allegheny County Mental Health/Mental Retardation system?

TSI is a private, nonprofit agency that is funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through the Allegheny County Department of Human Services and is licensed by the state. Referrals to TSI are received directly through the county or through other county contracted service coordination units.

Where are you located?

TSI has locations in the following areas: Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, Wilkinsburg, East Liberty, McKees Rocks, McKeesport, East Liberty, Highland Park, East Pittsburgh, Morningside

Who decides what services my family member will receive?

Your family member makes the decisions about what services will be received, and a plan is developed based on their specific goals. TSI works in collaboration with the other agencies that provide services to your family member. TSI works with other agencies to provide comprehensive support to best meet your family member's needs and desires.

How much help do you provide with cooking, shopping, cleaning, and laundry?

Our philosophy is "do with" the person, not "do for" the person. TSI provides support and opportunities for learning which are based on individual needs and are designed to help the person served enhance self-sufficiency in living skill areas such as cooking, cleaning, shopping, etc.

How does my family member spend his/her time during the day?

Since meaningful activities are part of a full and productive life, and only each individual can determine what is meaningful to them, persons served by TSI programs make choices about the daily activities in which they participate. Their choices can be based on many things, such as their personal preferences, their interests, the accessibility of activities and, most importantly, whether the activity is enjoyable or important to them. Persons served can participate in educational endeavors, paid or volunteer work, treatment-related activities, enrichment or social activities, or recovery programs.

How much support can TSI offer?

Congregate Supportive Living have staff on site for the ID Programs every day. PD Congregate Supported Living has staff on site Monday through Fridays. There is a back-up site that persons served can contact in the evenings and on weekends for assistance.

What if I just want to find an apartment?

TSI's Permanent Supportive Housing Program can be a Direct Referral. For information about PSH, click here.

How much is the rent?

Rents range from 30% in HUD subsidized building. 40% in CRR's.

Will TSI help pay my rent?

For our PSH and TAY Programs TSI does provide a rental subsidy until person is able to get Section 8 or get into a HUD building.

Do you provide transportation?

Whenever possible, people are encouraged to use public transportation. TSI provides mobility training as needed. ACCESS and the Medical Assistance Transportation Program (MATP) are also options used by the individuals who receive our services. TSI does not provide transportation on a regular basis. The agency's vehicles are primarily used for group activities, emergencies and short-term medical necessity.

How do you assist with medication?

Ultimately, the individual has the choice about whether or not to take medications. TSI works with the person to help them understand how their medications work and the benefits of taking them as prescribed. Each individual is carefully assessed regarding his/her level of medication independence and, when necessary, support is provided. Some of the support that staff can provide includes: reminders, pill boxes, pill counts and direct support and observation. TSI also works with the person and their doctors to encourage communication regarding how the medications are working and to address problems and concerns.

How are personal finances managed?

TSI follows strict regulatory and ethical guidelines to safeguard individual's funds. Many individuals who receive our services are able to manage their own finances. With the person's consent, staff can work with them on budgeting and other money manage- ment issues. TSI is not able to restrict the person's access to their funds. For individuals who need more assistance, TSI will help to locate a representative payee.

When do individuals leave the program?

There can be several reasons why a person leaves one of TSI's programs. An individual may be better served in a setting with less or more support. Individuals may become comfortable living on their own and may no longer need or want support, or they may experience changes in their physical or mental health. The person and their support team are involved in the decision-making process.

Where do families fit in?

TSI values the perspective that family members bring and the support that they offer the person. Through our surveys, TSI offers families an opportunity to give their opinion and make suggestions for improvement. Everyone who receives our services is asked who they would like to have on their support team. Based on the desires of the individual and the family member's willingness to be involved, the ways that family members can help are unlimited.

What about privacy?

According to state and federal laws, all individuals over the age of 18 have the right to confidentiality. This means that each individual determines with whom his or her personal protected health information may be shared.

Building Relationships, Fostering Hope, Changing Lives