Dylan Scott is a GOVERNING staff writer.E-mail: email@example.com
States could receive an increased federal Medicaid match if they provide home-based services that allow enrollees to remain in the community rather than be admitted to a hospital or a nursing home, according to a new Affordable Care Act (ACA) rule released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) this week.
It's called the Community First Choice Option, established under the ACA. States would receive an additional 6 percent in their federal Medicaid match (which ranges from 50 to 75 percent currently) for participating in the program, according to HHS.
To receive the enhanced funding, states must meet several requirements: create a council for stakeholders (such as the elderly and disabled) to develop their Community First Choice plan; set up a quality assurance system; and collect data to facilitate a federal evaluation of the program. States must also maintained their current level of spending for community and home-based services for the first 12 months.
The services are intended for individuals who would otherwise need an institutional level of care at a hospital or nursing home. They are intended to allow such individuals to remain in their home and community while being able to perform daily tasks and access health services, according to HHS.
Under the ACA, HHS will evaluate the success of Community First Choice plans in 2015.