Health and Family Services Cabinet
Federal Grant Will Allow Kentucky to Launch Half-Million Nursing Home Diversion Program
Kentucky Among Just 12 States Chosen by HHS
A grant from the federal Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) means nearly a half-million dollars will be available to provide more affordable choices to help keep people at home and out of nursing homes.
HHS has awarded Kentucky a more than $330,000 grant, which the state will match with $136,000 to launch the nursing home diversion program.
"This grant award will help support our progress in providing choices and support to Kentucky's aging citizens so they can stay at home in their communities in the future, if they choose to do so," said Governor Ernie Fletcher. "It is vitally important that we remain committed in the coming years to increasing the capacity for people in Kentucky to age where they want to."
This funding comes on the heels of announcements earlier this year of two related projects that build on the KyHealth Choices Medicaid reform initiative, the $49 million Money Follows the Person grant and the recently-approved federal waiver to provide more community alternatives.
A total of $5.7 million was awarded to the 12 states to support state efforts to assist individuals in avoiding unnecessary nursing home placement, impoverishment and spend-down to Medicaid.
The Nursing Home Diversion Modernization Grants Program will help enable states to use funds in a more flexible manner so that a greater range of support options can be made available to individuals who are at high risk of nursing home placement. These grants will also enable states to give consumers a greater role in determining the types of services and the manner in which they receive them.
The funding is part of President Bush's New Freedom Initiative, which seeks to modernize long-term care systems and conserve stretched Medicaid dollars by allowing people to stay at home where care is more affordable.
Congress included authority for these nursing home diversion grants in the most recent reauthorization of the Older Americans Act (OAA) signed into law by President Bush in October 2006. These new provisions in the OAA complement the changes occurring in Medicare and Medicaid, including the provisions in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 reflecting seniors’ desire to receive and direct their personal care at home.