The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is giving providers three more years to comply with the new rules pertaining to Home and Community Based Services (HCBS). The new compliance deadline will be March 17, 2022.
However, states should be actively working toward compliance despite the transition period extension, “Consistent with the preamble language, states should continue progress in assessing existing operations and identifying milestones for compliance that result in final Statewide Transition Plan approval by March 17, 2019. However, in light of the difficult and complex nature of this task, we will extend the transition period for states to demonstrate compliance with the home and community-based settings criteria until March 17, 2022 for settings in which a transition period applies.”
The HCBS requirements apply to home and community-based service settings that began operation prior to March 17, 2014.
Shoring up state Medicaid programs has been named as a priority by both Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price and CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “Medicaid programs are strongest when states have time to engage with beneficiaries and their families to ensure these programs fit their choices and needs,” Verma said in the CMS announcement. “Extending the HCBS compliance period by three years allows states to work more closely with those they serve, so they can increase the quality of care and minimize the potential for unnecessary disruption in services.”
For full details, see the CMS extension bulletin.