The groundwork for the HCB Waiver and its impact was laid in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

There was interest in the comparative expense of community-based services to Medicaid beneficiaries compared to institutional care.

A series of demonstrations helped generate interest among policymakers in using home-and community-based services instead of nursing care.

A second change to the funding rules made support for the children in their home far more available.

In 1982, Social Security Act Amendments [Section 143 of the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act (TEFRA), (P.L. 97-248)] permitted States to use Medicaid funds for certain children with disabilities who were 18 years of age or younger, living at home, and who would be eligible for SSI if they were institutionalized.

Operation Real Rights and Oklahoma's Shame
Tom Nerney describes a number of efforts to reform legislation and put an end to shameful conditions in institutions during the 1980s.
President Ronald Reagan
President Ronald Reagan