DHS Receives Federal Funding to Support Medicaid Beneficiaries Receiving Care Services in Their Community (September 20, 2022)

On September 20, 2022 the PA Department of Human Services (DHS) announced that Pennsylvania has received an estimated $12 million in federal reimbursement funding from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for the Money Follows the Person (MFP) Program to continue to support new and existing activities that meet the criteria for MFP funding. 

The MFP program allows states to leverage federal dollars to help Medicaid beneficiaries who live in institutions receive services they need in community settings instead. The MFP program provides the state with the financial flexibility to allow services to “follow the person” as older Pennsylvanians or those with a disability transition from an institutional setting back into the community. 

Since 2008, Pennsylvania’s participation in MFP has helped more than 4,500 individuals transition into the community, and MFP funding has provided Pennsylvania an estimated $180 million to cover a percentage of Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) and administrative activities.   

MFP funding can be used for education/outreach, trainings, IT enhancements and data analytics, capacity building, and pilot programs. Projects funded with this year’s federal MFP administrative reimbursement include:   

Capacity Building for the Dual Diagnosis Population and Individuals Under 21  

The Capacity Building Institute (CBI) Strategy educates, informs, and trains staff to identify and work with individuals who have a dual diagnosis of an intellectual disability/autism and a co-occurring mental illness. CBI offers high-level education with a focus on best practices in supporting individuals with complex needs. Funding will also support a new education and training initiative   to build the capacity of the systems involved in serving individuals under 21 with developmental and intellectual disabilities with complex needs.  


The START (Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources, and Treatment) PA Program is a community-based program that assists individuals with an intellectual disability or autism and have a co-occurring mental illness. These individuals are at a higher risk for inpatient hospitalizations when they experience crisis and require a high level of specialized skill in assessment and treatment approaches. START PA builds upon local resources, works to close current gaps in the systems of care, and provides crisis intervention and response services and supports for these individuals in the community instead of in State Hospitals or State Centers. 

Trauma Awareness and Intervention Programs  

The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown caused or exacerbated trauma for individuals with complex needs, and participants and providers needed resources to prepare for and respond to these individuals. MFP funding will support a collection of “micro-learning” resources about COVID-19 response and other trauma-related issues, which are updated and disseminated by the Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHO) Project via a hub-and-spoke knowledge-sharing network. The ECHO Project addresses population health needs in a scalable way via telementoring and collaborative care.  

More information on MFP can be found here.