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The longstanding direct support workforce crisis, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has led to closures of critically needed services and a denial of access to community-based supports.
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Capitol Correspondence - 03.09.21

Senate Passes COVID-19 Relief Bill with 10 Percent HCBS FMAP Increase

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In a major victory for ANCOR advocates and the disability community, the Senate passed its COVID-19 relief legislation 50-49 on Saturday with a provision that will create a $12 billion influx for the Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) program. ANCOR had advocated for the Senate legislation to keep language from the House-passed COVID-19 relief bill, which would have increased the HCBS federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP) by 7.35 percent. We are thrilled to announce that the Senate kept that provision and increased the targeted FMAP bump to 10 percent!

To demonstrate how important our advocacy is, reporting by Politico Pulse explains that hospital groups did not receive the $35 billion increase in funding they sought; this illustrates how the advocacy of ANCOR, our members and the broader disability community can resonate deeply with policymakers to make significant change for our community. Thank you for joining our efforts around this legislation and over the course of the pandemic!

Next steps: Today, the Senate bill goes to the House to receive a receive a full floor vote. The House is largely expected to pass the Senate bill unchanged, removing the need for negotiations over differences between the House and Senate texts. Once passed by the House, the bill will be sent to President Biden to be signed into law.

Stay tuned: We will notify our members once Congress has passed the bill. In the coming days, we will also discuss next steps to ensure states implement the HCBS FMAP bump and our members receive the sorely needed relief once it becomes available.