CMS to release grants for states to expand HCBS programs

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States soon will be able to apply for grants under the recently extended Money Follows the Person (MFP) Rebalancing Demonstration Program, which aims to keep Medicaid recipients in their homes and out of long-term care facilities.

The MFP funding was originally part of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005. The legislation allotted $1.75 billion in funding to expand states' use of home- and community-based services through the end of FY 2011. The recent healthcare reform law extends this program through 2016, providing an additional $450 million per year for state Medicaid programs to help transition Medicaid patients out of long-term care facilities and back into the community.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will post a grant solicitation in late July to offer states not currently participating the opportunity to apply for an MFP Demonstration Program Grant through a competitive award process, according to a June 22 letter from CMS to states.