Edmonson Voice Staff Report:
Congressman Brett Guthrie’s (KY-02) bill has been signed into law to help certain Medicaid beneficiaries voluntarily transition to receiving care in their own homes or communities rather than at a facility.
Guthrie introduced the Ensuring Medicaid Provides Opportunities for Widespread Equity, Resources (EMPOWER) and Care Act with Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI-12) to reauthorize the federal Money Follows the Person (MFP) program. This program allows certain Medicaid participants, such as seniors and individuals with disabilities, transition from a nursing home or institutional care back to their home. The MFP program does not require people to leave institutional care; rather, it allows individuals who choose to go home to do so.
The EMPOWER Care Act was included in the Medicaid Extenders Act of 2019, a comprehensive bill to improve Medicaid programs. President Trump signed the Medicaid Extenders Act into law on Thursday, January 24. The Medicaid Extenders Act provides funding for the MFP program that is expected to last for three months. Guthrie is currently working to introduce bipartisan legislation to reauthorize and fund the program for longer.
“I introduced the EMPOWER Care Act to empower people with disabilities to make choices about how they receive their care,” said Guthrie. “I have met with Medicaid beneficiaries in the Second District who have thrived under Kentucky Transitions, which administers the MFP program in the Commonwealth and has allowed hundreds of Kentuckians in nursing homes and other institutions to choose to go back to their homes for care. I am glad to see this bill signed into law, and I will continue to advocate for a long-term extension of this important program.”