Every year after the Governor of Florida signs the Florida Budget, I like to review it to see how it might affect Medicaid and other programs for the Elderly and persons with developmental disabilities, and veterans. On June 21, 2019, Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida signed into law, the Bold Vision for a Brighter Future budget for the fiscal year 2019 to 2020. (See here.[i]) The budget totals $90.98 billion. The budget will provide for the following in health and human services:
Persons with Disabilities
- Total spending on the I-Budget, home and communities-based services waiver will be $463 million from the General Revenue Fund and $733 million from the Operations and Maintenance Trust Fund for a total of almost $1.2 billion.
- $900,000 to give supported employment opportunities for individuals with developmental disabilities, who are on the I-Budget Medicaid HCBS Waiver waitlist and $700,000 for individuals with behavioral health needs.
- $70 million to serve individuals on the I-Budget Waiver, which is the home and community-based services waiver for persons with developmental disabilities that is run by the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD).
- $500,000 for Special Olympics.
- The budget asks the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) to seek federal approval of a program called Working People with Disabilities, for adults with developmental disabilities who receive services on the Medicaid waivers programs.
- APD must provide the Governor and the legislature a monthly surplus-deficit report.
- About $37 million will be held in resource contingent on APD preparing a detailed spending plan.
- Total spending on Long Term Care Medicaid will be $6.6 billion. This includes both nursing home and home and community-based services.
- Long Term Care home and community-based services Waiver will receive $1.1 billion from the General Revenue Fund, $303 million from the Health Care Trust Fund, $391 million from the Grants Trust Fund, and almost $3 billion from the Medical Care trust Fund for a total of almost $4.8 billion.
- Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) will receive $66.8 million from the Medical Care Trust Fund about $65 million from the Dept. of Elder Affairs.
- Funding for Nursing home Medicaid is predicated on amending F.S. 409.904 to extend the ban on retroactive Medicaid for eligible nonpregnant adults to July 1, 2020. (See here for the Senate Bill 2502[ii]).
- Another requirement is that AHCA must submit a report to the Governor and others “regarding the impact of the waiver of Medicaid retroactive eligibility on beneficiaries and providers” after consulting with DCF, the Florida Hospital Association and other stakeholders. The report must include information on the total number who applied for Medicaid at a nursing home and of that applications, the number of approvals and denials and their reasons for denials.
Programs for the Elderly
- $4 million in funding to provide for services for individuals with Alzheimer’s and other memory disorders and caregivers, such as adult day care, case management, and respite services through the Community Care for the Elderly Program (CCE).
- CCE will also receive $69 million from the General Revenue Fund and $3.2 million from the DOEA Operations and Maintenance Trust Fund, of which $2 million is to serve people on the CCE waitlist. Each Aging Resource Center must prioritize the funding to serve the elderly who have the most risk of being placed in a nursing home.
- $11 million to the Older Americans Act Program.
Programs for Veterans
- Total spending for state veterans’ homes will be $114 million.
- Funding for two new state veteran nursing homes in St. Lucie County and Orange County. Also, $5 million for capital improvements, equipment updates, and 21 additional nurses and CNAs for the existing state veterans nursing homes.
- Also, there will be $1.7 million to help veterans in mentoring, training, and networking.
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on Medicaid and other programs that affect the elderly, persons with disabilities,