Department of Health

Enhanced Medicaid Payments to Selected Home Health Care Service Providers

Home health care services enable individuals with certain medical conditions to continue living at home and avoid costly institutional care. In accordance with an amendment to the State’s Public Health Law, between 2006 and 2011, an additional $500 million in Medicaid funding is to be paid to organizations that provide certain home health care services to Medicaid recipients. The providers are to use these supplementary funds to improve their recruitment, training and retention (RTR) of direct care staff in order to meet more of the demand for home care services.

We visited a sample of the providers to determine whether they were using their $39 million in RTR funds as intended. We found indications that the providers were using some of the funds, at least, for the recruitment, training and retention of direct care staff, as intended. However, we were unable to fully account for their use of RTR funds, because their RTR funds were commingled with their other funds and were not accounted for separately from the other funds. To promote accountability for RTR funds, we recommended that the Department of Health monitor the providers to ensure that they were separately tracking the use of the funds, and provide detailed guidance to the providers on the allowable uses of the funds. We further recommended that the Department strengthen its oversight of RTR funds, as it did not always follow up with providers when they failed to submit a required statistical report describing their use of the funds and it did not require all the providers to submit such a report.

For a complete copy of Report 2009-S-25 click here.