Senior Policy Analyst
The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Health Subcommittee will hold a hearing tomorrow to consider the EMPOWER Care Act, which would reauthorize and fund the successful, cost-effective Money Follows the Person (MFP) demonstration through 2022. Since 2007, MFP has helped over 75,000 Medicaid beneficiaries in 44 states who need long-term services and supports (LTSS) transition from institutions back to their own homes and communities. MFP funding expired on September 30, 2016 and, while states can spend unused 2016 MFP funds through September 30, 2020, they’ll likely start to scale back their transition activities due to funding constraints.
MFP not only helps people live outside institutions; it has saved the states and the federal government money. From 2008 to 2013, MFP generated $978 million in reduced Medicare and Medicaid costs after the first year of transitioning MFP participants out of institutions and into home- and community-based care. MFP gives states federal funds to help “rebalance” how they provide long-term services and supports, moving such services from nursing homes and other institutions to people’s homes and communities — where it’s not only more cost-effective but also where most people want to live, improving their quality of life. The demonstration has played a significant role in Medicaid’s 30-year shift in funding long-term services and supports from nursing homes to home- and community-based settings.
Recent evaluations of MFP show that:
Restoring MFP funding would ensure continued progress in improving health outcomes and driving greater value in Medicaid.