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Provider Notice Issued 04/15/2022

Date:      April 15, 2022                                                                             

To:         Supportive Living Program Providers

Re:         American Rescue Plan Act Home and Community-Based Services Waiver for the Supportive Living Program: Rate Changes Effective April 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022

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This notice informs Supportive Living Program (SLP) providers of the implementation of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARP) rate increase effective for SLP services between April 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022. 

Background:

Section 9817 of the ARP authorized an increase in the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) by 10-percentage points for Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) between April 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022. The ARP requires states to use the state share savings attributable to the FMAP increase to enhance, expand, or strengthen HCBS under the Medicaid program. To access the funding, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) required Illinois to submit a spending plan with a list of initiatives it intends to implement.

Included in Illinois' federally approved spending plan was an initiative to assist SLP providers with staff recruitment and retention by temporarily increasing the SLP payment rate by $26 per day for 12 months. The Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) stated the increased funding is intended to be spent on allowable activities including salary/wage increases, bonuses, and other employment and hiring incentives. HFS also committed to require provider reporting on how the funds are spent as well as other metrics for evaluation purposes, such as turnover rates and overtime usage. 

Implementation:

HFS has received federal approval to implement the increased rates through an Appendix K waiver amendment.  Updated rates for the period of April 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022, have been entered into the State's payment system and the HFS has systematically repriced claims that were paid at lower rates. SLP providers should have already received payment for those adjustments. All newly submitted claims are being priced using the updated rates. 

In addition, updated rates have been sent to all managed care organization (MCO) plans.  Please contact the responsible MCO plan regarding their process for repricing claims paid at lower rates. Each MCO plan has a slightly different schedule for this process, but most anticipate completing by mid-May. HFS will provide more information on the timing of MCO payments as it becomes available.

Fund Uses and Reporting:

As stated in the federally approved spending plan, providers are to use the additional funding on activities to recruit and retain staff. Approved activities include increasing wages/salaries; providing sign-on and retention bonuses; increasing paid sick time or other flexible leave policies; paying shift differentials; or rewarding exceptional performance. 

In addition, HFS is developing a reporting tool for SLP providers to utilize to report information on how the additional funding is spent as well as metrics on staffing and wages. A supplemental notice will be posted regarding the reporting tool and timelines  for completion and submittal. 

Questions may be directed to the Bureau of Long Term Care toll free at 844-528-8444.

 

 

Kelly Cunningham, Administrator

Division of Medical Programs



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Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services

JB Pritzker, Governor • Theresa Eagleson, Director