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Texas gets Medicaid waiver for 4,000 people

Feb. 24, 2004 -- Last week the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services' Centers on Medicaid and Medicare Services approved a long-awaited Medicaid "home and community-based services waiver." Medicaid waivers allow states to waive Medicaid regulations. Texas now gets to waive the requirment, written into Medicaid law, that money be used to institutionalize people. This waiver, one of hundreds nationwide, will allow state officials to use Medicaid dollars to pay for services in an indivividual's home.

The waiver approved Feb. 17 will provide services to persons who are developmentally disabled or mentally retarded who otherwise would require care in a nursing home or other institution. "Those served under this waiver will receive respite care, minor home modifications, skilled nursing, adaptive aids, behavioral support, specialized therapies, dental treatment and other services," says a press release from HHS.

"The waiver will help nearly 4,000 state residents, many of whom are currently on waiting lists for these services," says the release.

More about Medicaid Waivers at our website

A story in the Jan. 26 Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that some parents of disabled children who need Medicaid services are divorcing in order to qualify for the low-income program. Only low-income individuals receive Medicaid.


Bob Kafka
512-442-0252 (512-431-4085 cellphone.)

Rosalie A. Kane, Ph.D.
Division for Health Services Research & Policy
School of Public Health
University of Minnesota
Phone: 612-624-5171
Fax: 612-624-5434

Larry Polivka, Ph.D.
Director, Florida Policy Exchange Center on Aging
University of South Florida






Expert sources


People like controlling their own in-home services, says study (12/10/02)

Consumer control of in-home services (overview)

In-Home Services and Safety

Bill would let Medicaid users choose in-home services routinely (4/22/03)

Administration to enlarge pool of Medicaid recipients living at home (1/7/03)

The Institutional Bias of Public Policy (overview)

Change -- and resistance -- to "institutional bias" (6/25/02)

Administration unveils Medicaid waiver "templates" to reduce institutional placement 5/21/02

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