HCBS: New Freedom Draft Waiver Amendment and Transition Plan

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) require States to seek public input when submitting an application for a renewal or an amended 1915c waiver.

The Agency and ALTSA intend to submit an application for renewal of the New Freedom Waiver, WA.0443. The renewal application, once approved, will allow the state to continue to provide New Freedom Waiver services to eligible persons. The effective date of the waiver renewal is expected to be January 1, 2020.

The New Freedom Waiver is a voluntary budget-based program that provides participants increased choice and control over their services and supports. This waiver program began in 2007 and is currently available only to individuals living at home in Pierce and King Counties. Participants must meet financial and functional eligibility requirements. Services include personal assistance services, environmental and vehicle modifications, individual-directed goods, services, and supports, training and educational supports, and treatment and health maintenance.

The state proposes these changes in the New Freedom renewal application:

  • Reduce the unduplicated count to align with actual participant count data in the annual waiver reports (372 reports) submitted to CMS.
  • Change performance measures in these sections of the application to align with performance measures in the COPES and Residential Support Waivers as approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) on January 1, 2019:
    • Appendix A: Administrative Authority
    • Appendix G: Health and Welfare
    • Appendix H: Quality Improvement Strategy
  • Adjust Appendix J estimated projections of service expenditures to more closely align with actual data from the 372 reports.  

The waiver application can be seen here (PDF). A paper copy of the draft waiver application is available upon request by contacting Jamie Tong at the address listed below or calling 1-800-422-3263 and selecting option #6.;

DSHS welcomes all comments on the draft waiver application. Comments may be submitted to DSHS through the website address listed above or may be mailed to Jamie Tong at the address listed below. DSHS will receive comments through 5:00 pm close of business on June 1, 2020.

Jamie Tong, Home and Community Services Division
Aging and Long-Term Support Administration
P.O. Box 45600
Olympia, WA 98504-5600