Money Follows The Person Act of 2003 Introduced In Senate
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
July 17, 2003
WASHINGTON, DC--Last week, U.S. Senators Tom Harkin of Iowa and Gordon Smith of Oregon introduced S. 1394, the "Money Follows the Person Act of 2003".
The bill would set up a demonstration project under which states would be encouraged to allow people housed in nursing homes and other institutions to take their Medicaid funding with them when they move into the community.
The bipartisan measure puts into bill form President George W. Bush's proposed "Money Follows the Person" rebalancing initiative, an effort to help states create a more even balance between institutional and community based services under the Medicaid program. Approximately 70 percent of Medicaid long-term care funding goes to nursing facilities and intermediate care facilities, while just 30 percent pays for community-based services.
The Money Follows the Person Act is separate from MiCASSA, the Medicaid Community Attendant Services and Supports Act (S. 971 and H.R. 2032), which would allow Medicaid recipients to choose between nursing facilities and community-based in-home supports.
Both measures are opposed by the Voice of the Retarded, a group that supports keeping institutions open, and by the nursing home industry.
"We need to have our collective voices be louder than theirs," the disability rights group ADAPT said in an on-line statement. "We need to encourage support for this bill and speak out about all the positives of community services."
Text of "Money Follows the Person Act of 2003" (U.S. Congress)