The Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services (CMCS) has released an informational bulletin to address issues outlined in a joint report titled Ensuring Beneficiary Health and Safety in Group Homes Through State Implementation of Comprehensive Compliance Oversight (issued January 17, 2018).
Group homes provide critical services and greater independence in the community for people with disabilities. However, it is crucial that these individuals receive safe, quality care and are treated with respect.
The bulletin addresses one of three suggestions made to CMS in the report: "encourage states to implement compliance oversight programs for group homes, such as the Model Practices, and regularly report to CMS." Model practices described for a robust state oversight framework are:
- State Incident Management and Investigation
- Incident Management Audits
- State Mortality Reviews
- State Quality Assurance
CMS notes the potential availability of enhanced federal matching funds for state activities to implement the model practices described in the joint report. Enhanced federal administrative match of 75% may be available for these activities if they are a part of a medical and utilization review performed by certain utilization and quality control peer review organizations.
ACL worked with federal partners in HHS’ Office of Inspector General (OIG) and Office of Civil Rights (OCR) on the joint report, which contains workable, holistic solutions that states can use to protect the health and safety of people living in group homes. To assist states in making improvements, OIG partnered with ACL and OCR, along with the Department of Justice, to develop model practices that help address gaps in reporting and monitoring efforts.