DBHDD and DCH Rescind Proposed Waiver Changes

On Thursday, December 9th, the Department of Community Health (DCH) and the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) released a joint statement indicating that they officially rescinded their proposals to place daily maximum caps on skilled nursing services and additional staffing services.

Some may recall that these proposals were first presented in October 2020 by DCH and DBHDD in their COMP waiver application proposal. Although there were significant concerns about what the caps might mean for people with disabilities who require higher levels of support to remain in their own homes, the COMP waiver application was submitted to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in December 2020, with the proposal to cap skilled nursing services and additional staffing services.

In the year since the application was submitted, Georgians with disabilities and their families tirelessly advocated against the proposed changes, meeting with state agencies, elected state and federal officials, and even CMS. Thursday’s announcement represents a major victory in ensuring that all Georgians with disabilities continue to receive the supports and services they need, in the setting of their choice.

We would like to thank everyone who engaged in this effort, and we would also like to thank DCH and DBHDD for their decision to rescind these proposals, and their continued efforts in supporting Georgians with disabilities and their families. When we work together, we can make great progress in this area.

Looking forward, Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities (GCDD) will continue to monitor the language included in the updated COMP waiver application, officially submitted to CMS on November 21, 2021. In addition, GCDD will continue to advocate for the over 7,000 Georgians with disabilities who remain waiting for a waiver. Our work continues, and we are so encouraged to see what great change can take place when Georgia’s disability community comes together to make its voice heard.