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NEWS FROM WASHINGTON

Shelley Rood

AJFCA Washington Director

                           Tuesday, May 22, 2012 

Budget Update Call

 

Please join the White House Office of Public Engagement for a budget update call with Robert Gordon, Executive Associate Director at the Office of Management and Budget. Please share this invitation with your networks and affiliates.

 

The White House Office of Public Engagement: Budget Update Call

Wednesday, May 23rd, 4:00pm ET

Dial In: 800-230-1951 (Please be sure to dial in 10 minutes early.)

Passcode Title: White House Update Call

VAWA Update Call 

 

Please join the White House for an update call on the Violence Against Women Act, with Lynn Rosenthal, the White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, and other Senior White House Officials.

 

VAWA Update Call

Thursday, May 24th, 12:30pm ET

Call-in number:  800-288-9626 (Please be sure to dial in 10 minutes early.)

RSVP HERE                      

 

Learn More: Related Blog Posts:

Behavioral Health Information Technology Conference Call

 

The Jewish Federations of North America is hosting a conference call on to discuss efforts regarding Behavioral Health Information Technology (BHIT) legislation that has already been introduced in the Senate. JFNA has strong reason to believe the legislation will be introduced in the House shortly (please see the attached memo).   

 

Behavioral healthcare is an umbrella term that comprises both mental health and substance abuse treatment. Many AJFCA member agencies are quite engaged in this type of service delivery. Given the impact on our system, JFNA and AJFCA have become more involved with these legislative efforts and JFNA is a leading member of the Behavioral Health Information Technology Coalition.    

 

The need to expand health information technology to different sectors, such as behavioral healthcare, has grown in recent years given the outpatient treatment options that are now available. JFNA hopes that your agency will be able to join us for this conference call and build on the growing number of communities that are capitalizing on behavioral health service delivery. The call will discuss this issue with noted Behavioral Health advocate Alfonso Guida (bio attached) and Ronald Soloway, Managing Director of Government & External Relations for UJA-Federation of New York. UJA-Fed has been a key leader on behavioral health issues and is quite focused on the BHIT legislation.  

 

Behavioral Health Information Technology 

Wednesday, June 6th, 3:00pm ET

Call-In: 877-304-2955

Conference ID:  6823774516#

 

Please RSVP to Allison Redisch by COB Thursday, May 31st.

CMS & CHIP Services Release of Home and Community-Based Services Rules

 

On May 11th, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released two rules that support State efforts to expand access to home and community based services (HCBS) for people with disabilities:

  1. Final Rule: Community First Choice (CMS-2337-F)
  2. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Home and Community-Based State Plan Benefit (CMS-2249-P2), otherwise known as the "1915(i)" notice of proposed rulemaking.

Community First Choice (CMS-2337-F)

This final rule implements the Community First Choice State plan option, which was authorized by the Affordable Care Act and provides an incentive for States to expand Medicaid coverage for person-centered home and community-based attendant services and supports. States that elect the Community First Choice option are eligible for a 6 percentage point increase in their federal medical assistance percentage. Individuals who require an institutional level of care are eligible for the services, which will be offered in community-based settings.

 

The Affordable Care Act directs that the Community First Choice benefit may only be available in a "home or community" setting, and this rule does not finalize language regarding the definition for such settings. CMS articulated standards for settings in Community First Choice's proposed rule, but based on the comments the agency received, CMS decided to revise the standard and seek public comment again. The revised standard is in the 1915(i) proposed regulation that CMS released today (discussed below.)  

 

While the settings requirements are proposed, the Community First Choice option is in full effect, and CMS will rely upon these proposed provisions as we review new State plan amendments to implement the Community First Choice option. To the extent that there are changes when the settings standard is finalized, we are committed to offering States a reasonable transition period (of not less than one year) to make any needed changes to come into compliance with the final rule so as to minimize any disruption to State systems that were established in compliance with the proposed regulations.

 

The rule is displayed at: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2012/05/07/2012-10294/medicaid-program-community-first-choice-option.

 

Additional information is available at: http://www.cms.gov/apps/media/fact_sheets.asp.

 

1915(i) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (CMS-2249-P2)

This notice of proposed rulemaking defines and describes the option available to States under section 1915(i) of the Social Security Act, first authorized in 2005 and enhanced by the Affordable Care Act. This option permits States to offer home and community-based services under the Medicaid State plan without the use of a waiver. As a result, States will have the ability to provide a full array of home and community-based services to individuals who do not qualify for an institutional level of care but have significant services needs, which can include individuals with mental health conditions, Autism Spectrum Disorder, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or Alzheimer's disease.

 

The rule also contains other provisions related to home and community based services, including:

  • A proposed definition of home and community based settings that will serve as a common definition for services offered through the Community First Choice option and the 1915(i) State plan option.
  • A five-year approval or renewal period for demonstration and waivers programs through which a State serves individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid benefits.

This notice of proposed rulemaking is open for public comment for 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. Please refer to the Federal Register for specific instructions about submitting comments.

 

The rule is displayed at: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2012/05/03/2012-10385/state-plan-home-and-community-based-services-5-year-period-for-waivers-etc-medicaid-program.

 

Additional information is available at: http://www.cms.gov/apps/media/fact_sheets.asp.