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Written by: John Wolf on Monday, April 30, 2012 Posted in:

Every day we work with many organizations which are in the process of implementing Money Follows the Person (MFP) programs.   It’s not surprising that each state opts to implement this program a little differently to fit within their organizations and to maximize resources.

While every implementation is unique, each state faces similar challenges and surprises.  We’ve created a list of five things states need to keep in mind when implementing Money Follows the Person initiatives.

  1. Who will cover the cost of daily living when the consumer returns to their home and community? There are many costs associated with living at home that are not covered by MFP grants: over-the-counter medicines, toilet paper, cleaning supplies, etc.  Quite often, these costs are not factored into a state’s plan for MFP, but covering some of these costs can greatly impact the success of the program.  One state we work with has added a separate fund for daily living to account for these extra costs.
  2. Reporting, Reporting, Reporting – A top priority for CMS, reporting is quite often the most anxiety-ridden element for states.  States need to keep reporting at the top of their minds from the very beginning of the implementation process and build processes and systems that will support accurate and timely collection of data for mandated reports.  Again, each state addresses this differently.  From what we’ve seen, those states that implement a comprehensive database to manage all of the data have the easiest time submitting accurate and timely reports.
  3. MFP and Care Transitions Goals Closely Linked – The purpose of both MFP and Care Transitions programs is to successfully transition individuals who choose to live in communities out of institutions.  Given the similarities between the two programs, several states are considering implementing a single system to manage both programs.  Specifically, one system that can track participants in either or both programs that also enables accurate and timely reporting.   By doing this, states can significantly decrease both cost and time required to effectively administer these programs.
  4. Scaling Requires Automation – For states that rely on manual, paper-based case management, tracking all the documentation required to successfully manage MFP can be challenging and consumes time and resources better spent on transitioning people back into the community.  States should consider taking advantage of an off-the-shelf system to automate paper-based processes that can be quickly implemented and integrated into business processes.
  5. Cross-departmental management may slow progress – MFP was created to assist those with physical disabilities, intellectual or developmental disabilities, the elderly, and others.  This often requires coordination across multiple state agencies and multiple provider agencies, which can slow progress and lead to fewer transitions.  Systems that enhance communications between these agencies will ensure that more people benefit from the MFP program.

Watch this on-demand presentation to learn how states are using technology to rapidly realize the goals of Money Follows the Person.