Updates on Moving Forward

August 12, 2020

There are, not surprisingly, multiple and frequently conflicting directives on where we are and what we are supposed to do next; for all of the angst back in March, I think we all felt that at least the direction was clear – “Stay Home!”  As we have tried to open up and restore a pattern of life from “Before COVID Times,” it has become a lot more complicated.  The most recent Medicaid Memo is reflective of the general recognition that “COVID Times” will continue for awhile:

Medicaid Memo (8/11/2020)

Note specifically the following:

  • “Any flexibilities listed in previous Medicaid Memos are still in effect during this current state of emergency unless explicitly stated otherwise. At such time that these and other flexibilities and allowances cease,providers will be notified through a Medicaid Memo noting the effective dates of those actions.”
  • “The purpose of this memo is to provide updates on the planned expiration date changes of the HCBS 1915(c)
    Waiver flexibilities specific to face to face visit requirements and other HCBS flexibilities. DMAS is
    granting the extension of these flexibilities to maintain provider staffing, maximize access to care, and
    minimize viral spread through community contact.”
  • “All flexibilities noted in this Medicaid Memo are extended until January 26, 2021, the approved end date of the Commonwealth’s federal Appendix K authority.”

We also want to share the letter sent this week to Seema Verma, CMS Administrator regarding “retainer” payments; while there is no indication, currently, that CMS will make the necessary policy change to allow these payments to be extended, the “ask” has been made and VNPP was happy to be a signator on the letter.