PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Aging and Long-Term Support Administration)
[Filed November 25, 2020, 1:16 p.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: In light of the COVID-19 public health emergency, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) waived rules requiring in-person assessments. In addition, that change clarified instances in which the in-person interviews are not required. Therefore, the department is planning to amend WAC 388-106-0050 What is an assessment?, and other related rules as may be required.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 74.09.520
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The department wants to continue providing personal care services to vulnerable people during the pandemic. To do that, federal medicaid law requires an assessment of a person's functional eligibility. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person assessments increase the risk of transmission, and the beneficiaries are often in high risk groups. Amendment of this rule is necessary for the preservation of the public health and safety, because without it the department may not be able to safely assess vulnerable adults so that they can receive needed medicaid services. Without the amendment it may be difficult for the department to comply with medicaid regulations and receive federal financial participation. Existing federal law allows for the assessment to be performed remotely if the person agrees. This requirement that the beneficiary agrees to a remote assessment has been temporarily waived by CMS. The amendment aligns the state rule with federal requirements. The department filed an emergency CR-103E Rule-making order as WSR 20-23-043 on November 12, 2020.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: None.
Process for Developing New Rule: The department of social and health services (DSHS) welcomes the public to take part in developing these rules. Anyone interested should contact the staff person identified below. At a later date, DSHS will file a proposal with the office of the code reviser with a notice of proposed rule making. A copy of the proposal will be sent to everyone on the mailing list and to anyone who requests a copy.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Angel Sulivan, P.O. Box 45600, Olympia, WA 98504-5600, phone 360-725-2495, fax 360-438-8633, TTY 1-800-833-8633, email email@example.com.
November 25, 2020
Katherine I. Vasquez