Together for Choice sent a memo to all members two weeks ago describing the challenges that providers are facing in light of the pandemic and outlining the legislative solutions that we would like to see in the next virus relief bill passed by Congress. The primary solution is to raise federal Medicaid reimbursement, 100% funded by the federal government, to cover the additional virus related expenses being incurred by all providers, both HCBS providers and ICF/DDs. That memo was sent to congressmen and senators across the country to make them aware of the crisis being faced by all providers of services to individuals with developmental disabilities and what was needed to keep these men and women safe.
We have since learned that bills have been introduced in the Senate and in the House that would increase Medicaid funding to cover virus related expenses. However, there is a huge flaw in the proposed legislation. Title II of the bills would limit the increased Medicaid funding only to HCBS settings. It excludes from the increased funding all ICF/DDs. This is unfair, discriminatory, and wrong. We are contacting all of the sponsors of the bills to let them know that the increased Medicaid funding is needed by all providers, regardless of setting type, and that Title II of the bills must be expanded to include all providers.
If your representatives are co-sponsoring the bills, please contact them and explain our concern. They may not realize the limitations in Title II and we are hoping that once this flaw is pointed out to them, they will advocate for expanding the bill to cover all providers.
Click HERE to see the Senate bill's co-sponsors.
Click HERE to see the House bill's co-sponsors.
Chairperson, Together for Choice