Autism Speaks supported legislation recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives that would delay the implementation of Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) and ensure states protect beneficiaries and providers.
The 21st Century Cures Act that passed in 2016 (H.R. 34) required states to implement EVV for Medicaid-funded personal care services by January 1st, 2019 and home health services by January 1, 2023. EVV is an electronic monitoring system that tracks the start and end of a personal care shift as well as details about the service provided.
The purpose of EVV is to regulate and ensure that personal care is being given to individuals who need it. Beyond that, it will also help personal health care workers by better tracking hours. It is intended to help lower fraud, mistreatment, correct payment, and over/underwork.
Many states will either not be ready or will rush to implement EVV for personal care services by January 1st, 2019. In addition, many states have already missed their option to apply for the new budget they would need to fund the program in the upcoming year. There is also a significant amount of variation and uncertainty as to which specific services will be required to use EVV. States that do not implement EVV will face significant financial penalties, however they may ask for additional time to come into compliance.
As a result of the compressed time frame, challenges with implementation, and concerns over beneficiary protections, many states, service providers and disability advocates sought a delay in the requirement. Two bills that would delay the implementation of EVV were introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. Autism Speaks supports both H.R. 5912 by Rhode Island Representative James R. Langevin and H.R. 6042 by Representative Brett Guthrie from Kentucky, both which would give states additional time to implement EVV. On June 19th, HR 6042 passed the house unanimously and was sent to the Senate for consideration.
Autism Speaks supports the delay of implementation and will continue to monitor the progress states make on EVV. We share concerns over potential Medicaid budget cuts, beneficiary protections and rushed EVV implementation that all would affect people with disabilities who need personal care services.