Joint Finance Committee Approves 12% Increase to Personal Care

The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee voted June 4 to approve a 12% increase to the Medicaid Personal Care Reimbursement Rate. The rate will increase by 9% on July 1, 2019 to about $18.23 per hour. It will increase by 3% in 2020 to about $18.77 per hour. This is the largest increase to personal care in nearly two decades.  Once the Joint Finance Committee has finished working on the budget, the full Assembly and full Senate will need to vote to approve it.

Other items contained in the Medicaid package passed by the Committee include:

 

Personal Care: Increased funding for the personal care rate by $91 million for the two-year budget period. This is roughly a 12% increase to the MAPC rate.

 

Family Care Direct Care Funding: Increased funding by $66 million for the two-year budget. I believe this puts total funding for that program at $126 million for the biennium. While personal care does not qualify for this money, supportive home care does.

 

Nursing Homes Rates: Increased funding by $73 million for the biennium. This works out to roughly a 7.4% increase to the nursing home rate for the biennium.

 

DHS Administrative Funding (EVV and other Contracts): Increased funding for the DHS Administrative budget by  $44 million. Part of this is being used to fund implementation costs for EVV implementation and other contracted services.

 

Dementia Initiatives: Provided funding to create eight new dementia care specialists and one tribal dementia care specialist.

 

Respite Care:  Increased funding by $125,000 per year.

 

Children’s Long Term Care: Approved the Governor’s recommendation to create a statewide intake, application and screening system for the Children’s Long Term Care System.  

 

Medicaid Cost-to-Continue: Approved cost-to-continue for Medicaid programming of $1.1 billion All Funds for the two-year budget.