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States were required to submit transition plans to CMS within one year of the effective date indicating how they would comply with the new requirements ensuring participants have access to and are integrated into the broader community. In December 2014, CMS issued guidance on how the Community Rule applies to non-residential services such as employment and day services.
Massachusetts first submitted its Statewide Transition Plan (STP) regarding residential HCBS services to CMS in a letter dated March 2, 2015, followed by an addendum that addressed non-residential services in a letter dated September 3, 2015. Prior to these submissions, the state gathered public comments on the STP and the addendum during two public comment periods, including three public forums. In total, 323 individuals or agencies submitted comments in writing, through e-mail, mail, and written testimony. Summaries of the comments received and the state’s response to these comments for all previously submitted materials are posted below.
In November 2015, the state received feedback from CMS addressing both the first STP submission and the addendum, and in response informally submitted a revised draft of the STP to CMS in February 2016. CMS provided additional, informal feedback in May 2016. The current version of the STP reflects updates responsive to all feedback and guidance received from CMS. Updates since the original 2015 submissions to CMS include several technical, structural, and formatting changes.
The state’s overall approach to transitioning all HCBS settings to full compliance with the Community Rule has not changed since the initial STP submissions to CMS in 2015. Therefore, substantive changes in the current version of the STP are limited to the inclusion of additional detail, updated information, and/or clarifications in the following areas.
IMPORTANT – as required by the new rule, Massachusetts will provide opportunities for the public to comment on the Statewide HCBS Transition Plan. Members of the public can submit their input on the Statewide HCBS Transition Plan via e-mail, regular mail, or in person at the public forum being held on August 3, 2016. Details about this event are listed below.
Public Forum Location: Worcester Public Library
3 Salem Square
Worcester, MA 01608
Date: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016
Time: 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
The Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) will discuss and receive public comments regarding the revised Statewide HCBS Transition Plan for compliance with the 2014 federal rule for Medicaid-funded residential and non-residential home- and community-based waiver services (also known as the "Community Rule" or the "HCBS Rule").
Written comments regarding the Statewide HCBS Transition Plan may be submitted by email to: HCBSWaivers@State.MA.US
Or by mail to
HCBS Waiver Unit
1 Ashburton Place, 11th Floor
Boston, MA 02108
Printed copies of the STP are available upon request. Use the email address or mailing address above to request a hard copy of the STP and related documents. Printed copies of the STP will also be available at the public forum.
Please Note: Comments regarding the Statewide HCBS Transition Plan must be submitted by August 10, 2016.
These Program Instructions (PIs) are issued by the Office of Elder Affairs and provide required procedures, protocols, and instructions to ASAPs in their operation of the Frail Elder Waiver and do not apply to participants in any other HCBS waiver.
In response to new rules issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) related to home and community based settings for Medicaid-funded HCBS waivers, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts submitted the materials found below. These materials include our initial Statewide HCBS Transition Plan, agency-specific Transition Plans related to waiver-operating agencies, a summary of the comments received through the public input process and the state’s responses to these comments. Massachusetts submitted these materials to CMS in a letter dated March 2, 2015.
In addition you will find further information about the new CMS rule through the links below.
Click on the links below to find additional information about the new CMS rules for HCBS waivers and Massachusetts’ response to these rules.
Click on the links below to find the Massachusetts’ HCBS Transition Plan Addendum for non-residential services as well as agency-specific information for DDS, MRC and EOEA. Massachusetts submitted the addendum to CMS in a letter dated September 3, 2015.