Oregon submits 1115 waiver application to expand services to older adults – State of Reform

Earlier this month, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) filed the state 1115 dispensation demonstration application to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to expand services for older adults and adults with disabilities. The exemption specifically requests the authorization to expand the Oregon Project Independence (OPI) and establish a new Family Caregiver Assistance Program (FCAP).

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“These programs provide limited services and support to individuals at risk of entering Medicaid’s long-term service and support system, with the intent of assisting individuals to either avoid or delay access to the Medicaid system,” the application states.

OHA filed the waiver in collaboration with the Department of Human Services and the Office of Aging and People with Disabilities. CMS opened public comment period for the application on Tuesday.

Oregon Project Independence (OPI) is funded solely by state funds and provides home supportsuch as personal care, home-delivered meals and case managementfor older adults and people with Alzheimer’s and other dementia diagnoses. The program currently serves about 2,350 individuals, but the state is asking to create a federally matched program to allow OPI to serve 4,500 people. The application states:

“The level of state aid to OPI has fluctuated over the last three decades, making long-term stability difficult and making it difficult to meet the demand for these services. There is a great demand for the program.”

The FCAP, the application reads, would use federal and state funds to support individuals receiving care from family members. The program will offer a list of services, including adult day care, transportation, nursing staff respite, and assistive technology. The state estimates the program will serve up to 1,800 people and their relatives.

Consumers would be eligible to receive services totaling a maximum of $ 500 per month, with an annual increase to meet inflation.

“With both programs, consumers will receive limited services tailored to their needs and life choices, which are culturally and linguistically responsive to each consumer’s needs. These programs can help avoid unnecessary hospitalizations or acute emergency medical care and placement outside the home. in an institutional or local long-term care. “

The exemption says these expanded programs are particularly important as the Oregon population continues to age. Oregon’s 65-74 age group is expected to increase by 60% over the next 10 years. During the same period, the population aged 85 and over is expected to increase by 33%.

The new FCAP program and the expansion of OPI would become operational on July 1, 2022. The state requests that the demonstration cover a 5-year period of possible renewal.

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