• Friday, April 27, 2012RSS Feed

    Final Rule Provides States Flexibility to Offer Home and Community-based Services

    Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final rule on the Medicaid program’s Community First Choice (CFC) option as mandated under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) establishing a new option for states to provide home and community-based attendant services and supports for beneficiaries.

    With the additional flexibility to finance home and community-based services and support, the provision is expected to increase state and local accessibility to services that augment the quality of life for beneficiaries through a person-centered plan of service and various quality assurances—at a potentially lower per capita cost relative to institutional care settings.

    According to the rule, states that elect this option must make available home and community-based attendant services and supports to assist in accomplishing activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living, and health-related tasks through hands-on assistance, supervision, and/or cueing. Additionally, the following services may be provided at the state’s discretion—transition costs, such as rent and utility deposits; first month's rent and utilities; purchasing bedding, basic kitchen supplies, and other necessities required for transition from an institutional setting; and the provision of services that increase independence or substitute for human assistance to the extent that expenditures would have been made for the human assistance, such as nonmedical transportation services or purchasing a microwave.

    The final rule sets forth the requirements for CFC, however, requirements pertaining to "setting," under §441.530, will be addressed in future rulemaking.


    Comments

    In reading the final rule there is a table that has TOTAL BENEFITS as a column. It states in there "potentially lower per capita cost". My understanding is that the Fed Gov is invsting $3billion into this program. Why has there not been a study done to prove this is a definite cost savings versus what appears to be a shot in the dark without any evidence to prove it will save money? When looking at what all this covers it is hard to see how the cost would be lower than what is paid by Medicaid for care at a skilled nursing facility. Especially when a portion of that cost is covered by the residents income minus $52 +-. If there is no proof that this program at such a high cost will save money why has it been rolled out?
    Posted by Chris Coyle on 4/27/2012 5:28 PM
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