CMS Announces Extension for States Under Medicaid Home and Community-Based Settings Criteria

May 12, 2017

This week the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a three-year extension for state Medicaid programs to meet the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) settings requirements for settings operating before March 17, 2014. This extension is in response to states’ request for more time to demonstrate compliance with the regulatory requirements and ensure compliance activities are collaborative, transparent, and timely.

“Medicaid programs are strongest when states have time to engage with beneficiaries and their families to ensure these programs fit their choices and needs,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “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.”

The announcement builds on a joint commitment from Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price and CMS Administrator Seema Verma to partner with states in improving the Medicaid program and the lives of those it serves. In the March 14, 2017 letter to governors, the HHS leaders laid out a vision of partnership that would provide high quality, sustainable, health care to those who need it most. “We commit to ushering in a new era for the federal and state Medicaid partnership where states have more freedom to design programs that meet the spectrum of diverse needs of their Medicaid population.”

States now have until March 17, 2022 to demonstrate compliance with the final rule.