GPA Program Information

General Public Assistance (GPA-Bridge)

The General Public Assistance (GPA) Program provides time-limited cash assistance to adults 18 to 64 years of age who have:

  • very limited income and resources and
  • an illness or medical condition that keeps them from working while awaiting SSI determination

GPA shall NOT be provided:

  • to any individual who has been determined eligible for SSI
  • to any individual who is eligible or who would, but for income and resources, be eligible for Rhode Island Works (RIW) program cash assistance
  • for certain persons who are in the care of, confined by, or in the custody of another State Agency such as: the Department of Corrections, the Department of Children, Youth and Families or the Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities & Hospitals (BHDDH)

Types of GPA Assistance

Interim cash assistance for the disabled is provided to individuals determined to have:

  • applied for and have been approved for Medicaid and
  • applied for and pursuing a claim for SSI

Supplemental payments for funeral and burial costs may be provided through vendor payments as determined by Department regulations.

Request for Assistance

May be received in the district office:

Intake Interview/Determining Eligibility

The GPA caseworker schedules an intake appointment with the applicant.

  • The DHS-2 Application for Assistance is the basic document used in the application process for determining eligibility for GPA interim assistance and burial assistance.
  • A list of necessary documents an applicant may need to provide is identified on the DHS-2 Application for Assistance document.
  • The State’s Medical Assistance Review Team (MART) must also determine whether the applicant is disabled before being approved for GPA-Bridge.

Benefits Approved

Once eligibility is determined for GPA applicants, initial eligibility:

  • may be granted for a period of up to six (6) months and/or
  • renewable for a period of up to an additional six (6) months

In order to receive GPA for a period greater than twelve (12) months, individuals must re-apply for General Public Assistance.

When Determined Ineligible

The applicant has the right to appeal the decision by requesting a fair hearing. The appeal instructions and forms are available on the DHS website Appeals Process page.