Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS)

In 2014 CMS released a rule for Home and community-based services (HCBS) waivers called the HCBS final rule. This rule requires that all settings who provide HCBS funded services must meet specific criteria in order to continue to receive Medicaid funding. The final date for all settings to be HCBS compliant is March 17, 2023.

The HCBS provide opportunities for Medicaid beneficiaries to receive services in their own home or community rather than institutions or other isolated settings. These programs serve a variety of targeted populations groups, such as people with intellectual or developmental disabilities, physical disabilities, and/or mental illnesses. The goal of the HCBS Rule is to make sure that the supports and services individuals receive, give individuals the opportunity for independent decision-making, to fully participate in community life, and to make sure their rights are respected.

Medicaid-funded HCBS cannot be used for services and supports that do not meet the requirements of the HCBS Rule as these services and supports are considered institutional or isolating. HCBS services include community living supports (CLS), skill building and supported employment services.