News Notes from the CEO-July 2022
I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer. Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence, which was ratified by the Second Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. The Second Continental Congress declared that the Thirteen Colonies were no longer subject to the monarch of Britain, King George III, and were now united, free, and independent states. Today, Arkay is seeking to expand its reach and its services. We are working on a NEW 3-year Strategic Plan which will map out FY 2023 to FY 2025.
Arkay will need to continue to emphasize community integration with our services with full participation in community life: All individuals served are to take part in their community and have the same access as other individuals in the community. This requires full participation in community life. Our goal is now to focus on integrated and unsubsidized employment for our customers.
At the Federal level, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published a new set of rules for the delivery of Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) through Medicaid waiver programs. Through these new rules, CMS aims to improve the experience of individuals in these programs by enhancing access to the community, promoting the delivery of services in more integrated settings, and expanding the use of person-centered planning (PCP).
In response, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has been developing a statewide transition plan to bring its waiver programs into compliance with the new regulations while continuing to provide vital services and supports to Michigan citizens.
These rules will ensure individuals who have disabilities have the same access to the community as individuals who do not have disabilities. It allows individuals the opportunity to make decisions about the services they receive and who provide their services. The goal of the HCBS Final Rule is to make sure that the services individuals receive, give people the opportunity for independence in making life decisions, to fully participate in community life, and to ensure that individuals’ rights are respected. In light of the difficult and complex nature of this task, CMS recently has extended the transition period for states to demonstrate compliance with the home and community-based settings criteria by March 17, 2023.
The Michigan Medicaid program has created several “waiver” programs to provide services to Michigan residents who have aging-related needs, disabilities, or other health issues. Individuals in these programs can receive services in their own homes and/or communities rather than in an institutional setting. CMS has issued new rules for HCBS to ensure that individuals who receive home and community-based services through waivers are a part of the community and have access to the same set of community options as people who do not receive services through these waivers.
Arkay will need to continue to emphasize community integration with supported employment and skill building services. Full participation in community life is the goal: All individuals are to be supported to take part in their community and have the same access as other individuals in the community. This requires full participation in community life. Arkay will need to emphasize & focus on integrated and unsubsidized employment for our consumers.