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Measures to Enhance Home Care and Prevent Spousal Impoverishment Advance in Congress

Posted on Monday, June 24, 2019 3:28 AM

This week, the Empowering Beneficiaries, Ensuring Access, and Strengthening Accountability Act was passed by the House of Representatives.  This legislation extends the Medicaid Money Follows the Person (MFP) program, as well as spousal impoverishment protectors for four and a half year.  If the Senate passes the bill, it will put an end to the constant short-term extensions of these programs.

The Money Follows the Person program funds state Medicaid programs to allow beneficiaries to remain in their own home instead of an institution by allowing for personal care services, transportation and home modifications. Spousal Impoverishment protections were put in place so that the spouses of Medicaid institutional long-term services and supports (LTSS) recipients were able to maintain certain levels of incomes and assets without counting against the Medicaid status of the institutional LTSS receiving spouse. These protections were not allowable in cases of patients receiving home and community- based services. The Affordable Care Act extended these protections to HCBS scenarios, but they were not made permanent and have needed ongoing extensions to continue.

Source: NAHC Report

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