The Assisted Living Federation of America (ALFA), has written a letter expressing its concerns with regulation proposed last April by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. If the rule remains unchanged, ALFA fears that many currently eligible senior living residents will be denied assistance through the Home and Community Based Waiver Program.
The proposed rule would restrict what constitutes a community based option by centering the definition on specific physical requirements. For example, a community that does not provide a lease or does not include a kitchen in every apartment would no longer be considered a community based option. These restrictions would eliminate most residents of assisted living communities from participating in the Home and Community Based Waiver Program. “We strongly object to rules that define a home and community–based setting based on the size of the apartment or the number of people who may live in an assisted living community,” reads the letter penned by ALFA President & CEO Rick Grimes, “Further, individuals must have the choice to live where they want to live. The core values of respect, dignity, privacy, independence, autonomy and choice are the foundation for person–centered planning.”
ALFA opposes the prescriptive language throughout the proposed rule that sets requirements, such as community size, which may prevent senior care communities with person centered planning and services from being considered community based options. “Congregate settings for people receiving services that implement person centered planning, such as assisted living; allow individuals the opportunity to thrive,” wrote Grimes, “It is critical that the proposed rules do not intentionally or unintentionally limit the choice for seniors and others to select the place they call home.”
View the whole letter addressed to Dr. Berwick, Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.