Earlier this week, thanks to the hard work of advocates like you, the House of Representatives passed the IMPROVE Act (H.R. 7217) which includes important provisions supporting Medicaid home and community-based services (HCBS):

  • Three-month extension of the "spousal impoverishment protections" that make it possible for an individual who needs a nursing home level of care to qualify for Medicaid HCBS while allowing their spouse to retain a modest amount of income and resources, and
  • Three months of funding for the Medicaid Money Follows the Person (MFP) program that helps individuals who are residing in institutions transition to community living. 

As MFP has already expired and the spousal impoverishment protections for HCBS are set to expire on December 31, we need your help in telling Congress to pass these short-term extensions before the end of the year!

Spread the word about the #IMPROVE Act

  • On social media, and use #FundMFP and #HCBS.
  • Call your Senators TODAY at (202) 224-3121 and ask them to vote YES on the IMPROVE Act (H.R. 7217) to extend the Medicaid HCBS spousal impoverishment protections and reauthorize the MFP program. 

Here is more information about these critical HCBS policies to help your advocacy: 

  • Medicaid's "spousal impoverishment protections" make it possible for an individual who needs a nursing home level of care to qualify for Medicaid and receive long-term services and supports, while allowing their married spouse to retain a modest amount of income and resources to pay for rent, food, and medication. Congress extended this protection to eligibility for HCBS in all states beginning in 2014, providing married couples the same financial protections whether or not care is provided in a facility or in the community. Allowing the policy to expire now could force people who are now eligible for HCBS into more costly institutional care against their wishes and stall or even reverse progress states have made in helping older adults and people with disabilities remain at home and in the community.
  • Money Follows the Person (MFP) helps older adults and people with disabilities move out of institutions and into the community and is a common-sense way to fund Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services that improve the quality of life for people and families, and save federal dollars that would otherwise be spent in more costly institutions. 
  • The IMPROVE Act's short term extensions of both MFP and the HCBS spousal impoverishment protections would serve as a critical bridge to keep these policies and programs in place so that we can work with the new Congress for longer-term solutions. 

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Justice in Aging
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