National Council Releases Synopsis of CMS Guidance on Medicaid Health Homes

by Rebecca Farley on December 17, 2010

The National Council has released a new fact sheet summarizing recently issued guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on the design of state Medicaid health homes programs. This new Medicaid health home program was strongly supported by the National Council during the legislative debate over health reform.

The program creates a Medicaid option for states to provide coordinated, integrated care to beneficiaries with chronic conditions. Serious and persistent mental illness or substance use disorders are included in the program’s definition of chronic conditions, and community mental health centers are listed in the legislation as eligible health homes facilities.

The recent CMS guidance offers states initial guidelines on how they may take advantage of the new option. The National Council’s summary includes key information for behavioral health organizations, including details on eligible organizations, required health homes services, and payment methodologies. The synopsis also includes a description of the consultation with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) that states must undertake prior to submitting their health homes proposals to CMS. The National Council will continue to provide information and resources about the health homes state option; stay tuned to MentalHealthcareReform.org, the Public Policy Update and our other communications for the latest news and information.

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