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Public Comment Wanted on HCBS Settings Transition

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The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued regulations that define the settings in which states are allowed to pay for Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS). The purpose of these regulations is to make sure that individuals receive Medicaid HCBS in settings that are integrated in and support full access to the greater community.  This includes opportunities to seek employment and work in competitive and integrated settings, engage in community life, control personal resources, and receive services in the community, to the same degree as individuals who do not receive HCBS.

The Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) is working on transition plans so that the state can comply with these new regulations.  In August, the state submitted the first waiver transition plan (for the ID waiver) after a public comment period that began in May.  DHS is now working on the transition plans for the remaining six HCBS waivers - Brain Injury, Children's Mental Health, Elderly, Health and Disability, Physical Disability, and HIV/AIDS.  All will be consistent in their approach (although the dates in them may be different), and will be integrated into an overall statewide HCBS Transition Plan.

You can read these plans at the following links:

DHS is now accepting public comments on these six transition plans - comments are due by November 30, 2014.  Comments should be submitted to: HCBSsettings@dhs.state.ia.us. DHS is also planning to present the plans and take comments via webinar in November, but it has not yet been scheduled (watch for upcoming News Alerts).

You can also read the already-submitted ID Waiver Transition Plan (which has not yet been approved by CMS) and public comments received during that period at the links below:

You can learn more about these changes at an upcoming webinar. These webinars will provide an overview of the federal HCBS Settings regulations, discuss the transition plans that have been developed to bring Iowa into compliance with the regulations, and give attendees an opportunity to submit questions and comments about the transition plans.  

Webinar Dates & Times

Please note that the same presentation will be given at all three webinars; participants do not need to register for more than one session.  You will need a computer/tablet/smartphone and Internet connection to participate, and you must register to participate. After registering, you will be sent instructions about connecting to the webinar.

More information is available at http://dhs.iowa.gov/ime/about/initiatives/HCBS