OPWDD Provider Update


On today’s OPWDD call, they covered the following:


  1. Willow covered the visitation document that was issued yesterday via a Commissioner’s message that reminded people that visitation restrictions remain in place, and that providers had an obligation to facilitate meaningful communication between parents and residents.
  2. Data update –  As of 5/20 – 2,611 confirmed positive cases; 2,148 lived in certified residential programs, 392 resulted in deaths; of those county breakdown over 90% downstate; similar trends 90% in certified residence; 50 or older 83%; similar sex and comorbidity breakouts to last week.  The State then took credit for their steps they’ve taken to bring down the rate of infection.
  3. Fiscal Update – Kevin Valencis reported the 1/1 and 4/1 rates have been calculated and the package is on its way through DOH and will be processed by DOB once they receive the rates from DOH and they realize it is a priority; status of retainer day units – they have received DOH calculations and provided feedback to DOH and they hope to see them out in the next few business days; they are checking on a SNAP benefits decision in the state to count unemployment income for eligibility – one Affiliate had heard from their local food stamps office that the SNAP benefit would be discontinued for a resident who receives the $600 benefit because they no longer meet income requirements for SNAP (this is a state by state decision on whether those funds would be counted for eligibility).  Can providers question/challenge the units? OPWDD said they don’t have an appeals mechanism, but they used claims data and think it’s going to prove to be correct; if there seem to be substantial issues, they may look at it. Also mentioned ISS is also using $600 unemployment payment being used in rent subsidy calculations. For changes in service levels for day retainer program, it may be handled during the reconciliation process – not promised, but they’ll look at increases in service level to see if increased units above the 6 month average can be used.   Where is self-direction budget approval? Providers have been waiting for some time – where is the guidance we’ve been promised for weeks? Will there be a retainer program for self-direction?  Any update on ICF billing? OPWDD indicated the 1115 has been submitted and is under review by CMS.
  4. Any update on guidance for reopening, particularly for those not able to comprehend the social distancing and other rules?  Jill P. explained her staff are working on a document to assist on that front.