HHS Announces $110 Million For Seniors and People with Disabilities Leave a comment

On March 31, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced via a press release that it will offer more than $110 million to increase access to home and community-based services (HCBS) through Medicaid’s Money Follows the Person (MFP) program.

The release states that “First authorized in 2005, MFP has provided states with $4.06 billion to support people who choose to transition out of institutions and back into their homes and communities. The new Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) makes individual awards of up to $5 million available for more than 20 states and territories not currently participating in MFP. These funds will support initial planning and implementation to get the state/territory programs off the ground, which would ensure more people with Medicaid can receive high-quality, cost-effective, person-centered services in a setting they choose.”

That said, “To help additional states and territories implement MFP, these awards will support the early planning phase to get an MFP program off the ground. This includes:

Establishing partnerships with community stakeholders, including those representing diverse and underserved populations, Tribal entities and governments, key state and local agencies (such as state and local public housing authorities), and community-based organizations;

  • Conducting system assessments to better understand how HCBS support local residents;
  • Developing programs for the types of community transitions MFP supports;
  • Establishing or enhancing Medicaid HCBS quality improvement programs;
  • Recruiting HCBS providers as well as expert providers for transition coordination and technical assistance; and
  • Conducting a range of planning activities deemed necessary by the award recipients and approved by CMS.”

CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure was quoted in the release saying that “Our healthcare system works best when it meets us where we are and helps us get to where we want to be. With this new funding opportunity, we’re expanding a program with a proven track record of helping seniors and people with disabilities transition safely from institutional care to their own homes and communities. Letting ‘money follow the person’ is key to those successes, and to the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to affordable, accessible, person-centered care.”

State Medicaid agencies that are not currently participating in the MFP demonstration can apply through the NOFO no later than May 31, 2022, through Grants.gov.

“For states already participating in MFP, CMS also announced that the agency is increasing the reimbursement rate for MFP ‘supplemental services,’” the release adds. “These services will now be 100% federally funded with no state share. Further, CMS is expanding the definition of supplemental services to include additional services that can support an individual’s transition from an institution to the community, including short-term housing and food assistance. These changes will help further address critical barriers to community living for eligible individuals, as well as increase community transition rates and the effectiveness of the MFP demonstration overall. For more information on current and previous grantees, visit Medicaid.gov. CMS will provide additional information on these changes to MFP grantees.”


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