The Legislature finds that the home and community-based services delivery system for persons with developmental disabilities and the availability of appropriated funds are two of the critical elements in making services available. Therefore, it is the intent of the Legislature that the Agency for Persons with Disabilities shall develop and implement a comprehensive redesign of the system. (1) The redesign of the home and community-based services system shall include, at a minimum, all actions necessary to achieve an appropriate rate structure, client choice within a specified service package, appropriate assessment strategies, an efficient billing process that contains reconciliation and monitoring components, and a redefined role for support coordinators that avoids potential conflicts of interest and ensures that family/client budgets are linked to levels of need.
(a) The agency shall use an assessment instrument that the agency deems to be reliable and valid, including, but not limited to, the Department of Children and Family Services’ Individual Cost Guidelines or the agency’s Questionnaire for Situational Information. The agency may contract with an external vendor or may use support coordinators to complete client assessments if it develops sufficient safeguards and training to ensure ongoing inter-rater reliability.
(b) The agency, with the concurrence of the Agency for Health Care Administration, may contract for the determination of medical necessity and establishment of individual budgets.
(2) A provider of services rendered to persons with developmental disabilities pursuant to a federally approved waiver shall be reimbursed according to a rate methodology based upon an analysis of the expenditure history and prospective costs of providers participating in the waiver program, or under any other methodology developed by the Agency for Health Care Administration, in consultation with the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, and approved by the Federal Government in accordance with the waiver.
(3) The Agency for Health Care Administration, in consultation with the agency, shall seek federal approval and implement a four-tiered waiver system to serve eligible clients through the developmental disabilities and family and supported living waivers. The agency shall assign all clients receiving services through the developmental disabilities waiver to a tier based on the Department of Children and Family Services’ Individual Cost Guidelines, the agency’s Questionnaire for Situational Information, or another such assessment instrument deemed to be valid and reliable by the agency; client characteristics, including, but not limited to, age; and other appropriate assessment methods.
(a) Tier one is limited to clients who have service needs that cannot be met in tier two, three, or four for intensive medical or adaptive needs and that are essential for avoiding institutionalization, or who possess behavioral problems that are exceptional in intensity, duration, or frequency and present a substantial risk of harm to themselves or others. Total annual expenditures under tier one may not exceed $150,000 per client each year, provided that expenditures for clients in tier one with a documented medical necessity requiring intensive behavioral residential habilitation services, intensive behavioral residential habilitation services with medical needs, or special medical home care, as provided in the Developmental Disabilities Waiver Services Coverage and Limitations Handbook, are not subject to the $150,000 limit on annual expenditures.
(b) Tier two is limited to clients whose service needs include a licensed residential facility and who are authorized to receive a moderate level of support for standard residential habilitation services or a minimal level of support for behavior focus residential habilitation services, or clients in supported living who receive more than 6 hours a day of in-home support services. Total annual expenditures under tier two may not exceed $53,625 per client each year.
(c) Tier three includes, but is not limited to, clients requiring residential placements, clients in independent or supported living situations, and clients who live in their family home. Total annual expenditures under tier three may not exceed $34,125 per client each year.
(d) Tier four includes individuals who were enrolled in the family and supported living waiver on July 1, 2007, who shall be assigned to this tier without the assessments required by this section. Tier four also includes, but is not limited to, clients in independent or supported living situations and clients who live in their family home. Total annual expenditures under tier four may not exceed $14,422 per client each year.
(e) The Agency for Health Care Administration shall also seek federal approval to provide a consumer-directed option for persons with developmental disabilities which corresponds to the funding levels in each of the waiver tiers. The agency shall implement the four-tiered waiver system beginning with tiers one, three, and four and followed by tier two. The agency and the Agency for Health Care Administration may adopt rules necessary to administer this subsection.
(f) The agency shall seek federal waivers and amend contracts as necessary to make changes to services defined in federal waiver programs administered by the agency as follows:
1. Supported living coaching services may not exceed 20 hours per month for persons who also receive in-home support services.
2. Limited support coordination services is the only type of support coordination service that may be provided to persons under the age of 18 who live in the family home.
3. Personal care assistance services are limited to 180 hours per calendar month and may not include rate modifiers. Additional hours may be authorized for persons who have intensive physical, medical, or adaptive needs if such hours are essential for avoiding institutionalization.
4. Residential habilitation services are limited to 8 hours per day. Additional hours may be authorized for persons who have intensive medical or adaptive needs and if such hours are essential for avoiding institutionalization, or for persons who possess behavioral problems that are exceptional in intensity, duration, or frequency and present a substantial risk of harming themselves or others. This restriction shall be in effect until the four-tiered waiver system is fully implemented.
5. Chore services, nonresidential support services, and homemaker services are eliminated. The agency shall expand the definition of in-home support services to allow the service provider to include activities previously provided in these eliminated services.
6. Massage therapy, medication review, and psychological assessment services are eliminated.
7. The agency shall conduct supplemental cost plan reviews to verify the medical necessity of authorized services for plans that have increased by more than 8 percent during either of the 2 preceding fiscal years.
8. The agency shall implement a consolidated residential habilitation rate structure to increase savings to the state through a more cost-effective payment method and establish uniform rates for intensive behavioral residential habilitation services.
9. Pending federal approval, the agency may extend current support plans for clients receiving services under Medicaid waivers for 1 year beginning July 1, 2007, or from the date approved, whichever is later. Clients who have a substantial change in circumstances which threatens their health and safety may be reassessed during this year in order to determine the necessity for a change in their support plan.
10. The agency shall develop a plan to eliminate redundancies and duplications between in-home support services, companion services, personal care services, and supported living coaching by limiting or consolidating such services.
11. The agency shall develop a plan to reduce the intensity and frequency of supported employment services to clients in stable employment situations who have a documented history of at least 3 years’ employment with the same company or in the same industry.
(4) The geographic differential for Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties for residential habilitation services shall be 7.5 percent.
(5) The geographic differential for Monroe County for residential habilitation services shall be 20 percent.
(6) Effective January 1, 2010, and except as otherwise provided in this section, a client served by the home and community-based services waiver or the family and supported living waiver funded through the agency shall have his or her cost plan adjusted to reflect the amount of expenditures for the previous state fiscal year plus 5 percent if such amount is less than the client’s existing cost plan. The agency shall use actual paid claims for services provided during the previous fiscal year that are submitted by October 31 to calculate the revised cost plan amount. If the client was not served for the entire previous state fiscal year or there was any single change in the cost plan amount of more than 5 percent during the previous state fiscal year, the agency shall set the cost plan amount at an estimated annualized expenditure amount plus 5 percent. The agency shall estimate the annualized expenditure amount by calculating the average of monthly expenditures, beginning in the fourth month after the client enrolled, interrupted services are resumed, or the cost plan was changed by more than 5 percent and ending on August 31, 2009, and multiplying the average by 12. In order to determine whether a client was not served for the entire year, the agency shall include any interruption of a waiver-funded service or services lasting at least 18 days. If at least 3 months of actual expenditure data are not available to estimate annualized expenditures, the agency may not rebase a cost plan pursuant to this subsection. The agency may not rebase the cost plan of any client who experiences a significant change in recipient condition or circumstance which results in a change of more than 5 percent to his or her cost plan between July 1 and the date that a rebased cost plan would take effect pursuant to this subsection.
(7) Nothing in this section or in any administrative rule shall be construed to prevent or limit the Agency for Health Care Administration, in consultation with the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, from adjusting fees, reimbursement rates, lengths of stay, number of visits, or number of services, or from limiting enrollment, or making any other adjustment necessary to comply with the availability of moneys and any limitations or directions provided for in the General Appropriations Act.
(8) The Agency for Persons with Disabilities shall submit quarterly status reports to the Executive Office of the Governor, the chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee or its successor, and the chair of the House Fiscal Council or its successor regarding the financial status of home and community-based services, including the number of enrolled individuals who are receiving services through one or more programs; the number of individuals who have requested services who are not enrolled but who are receiving services through one or more programs, with a description indicating the programs from which the individual is receiving services; the number of individuals who have refused an offer of services but who choose to remain on the list of individuals waiting for services; the number of individuals who have requested services but who are receiving no services; a frequency distribution indicating the length of time individuals have been waiting for services; and information concerning the actual and projected costs compared to the amount of the appropriation available to the program and any projected surpluses or deficits. If at any time an analysis by the agency, in consultation with the Agency for Health Care Administration, indicates that the cost of services is expected to exceed the amount appropriated, the agency shall submit a plan in accordance with subsection (7) to the Executive Office of the Governor, the chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee or its successor, and the chair of the House Fiscal Council or its successor to remain within the amount appropriated. The agency shall work with the Agency for Health Care Administration to implement the plan so as to remain within the appropriation.