The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, has approved the state of Washington’s request for a one-year extension to the Medicaid Transformation Project (MTP), carrying the work through all of 2022.  The Washington Health Care Authority received the news in mid-December.

MTP is also known as Washington’s Section 1115 Medicaid waiver. It allows the Washington Health Care Authority to create and continue to develop projects, activities, and services that benefit enrollees of Apple Health (Washington’s Medicaid).

The Washington State Health Care Authority requested the extension into a sixth year because of the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which delayed the state’s full implementation of its multi-region MTP program.

“Dealing with COVID certainly interrupted the progress being made on the Medicaid Transformation Project,” said Linda Evans Parlette, Executive Director of the North Central Accountable Community of Health, which serves Chelan, Douglas, Grant, and Okanogan counties.  “CMS has acknowledged this and therefore allowed the sixth year extension of the MTP.  NCACH looks forward to continuing to work with all of our partners throughout our four-county region, including our work with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.”

The approval from CMS provides one additional year for all five of the MTP initiatives, allowing them to continue during January 1-December 31, 2022. Those initiatives include:

  1. Transformation through Accountable Communities of Health (ACHs) and Indian health care providers.  ACHs and Indian health care providers are implementing projects that change the way people receive health care in their region.
  2. Long-term services and supports for Washington’s aging population and family caregivers through Medicaid Alternative Care and Tailored Supports for Older Adults programs.
  3. Foundational Community Supports, which helps vulnerable adults find and maintain stable housing and employment.
  4. Substance use disorder institutions for mental disease, which allow the state of Washington to make improvements and use federal financial participation for Medicaid substance use disorder treatment services in those facilities.
  5. Mental health institutions for mental disease, which allow our state to purchase acute inpatient services for Medicaid clients between the ages of 21 and 65 who reside in a dedicated psychiatric facility.

The additional project year will allow the state to complete aspects of its work and collect associated data to evaluate the impact of those accomplishments.  All initiatives that were authorized for the original project period will continue into the sixth year.

In addition to this one-year extension, the state of Washington plans to submit a five-year MTP renewal application to the CMS in mid-2022. This renewal package will include plans, beginning in 2023, for the evolution of initiative 1, continuation of initiatives 2-5, and the support of several new initiatives. If approved, the MTP renewal period would be from January 2023 to December 2027.

Click here for more information about the Medicaid Transformation Project.

Click here for more information about the Medicaid Transformation Project renewal.