Kansas provides long-term care resources to seniors through the Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services (KDADS). KDADS oversees the Aging and Disability Resource Center(ADRC), which provides information on services for Medicare and Medicaid eligibility seniors. ADRC serves the entire state by providing people of all incomes and ages with information on the full range of long-term support options. ADRC provides individual personalized options counselling services through local community specialists. The KDADS has contracted with the Southwest Kansas Area Agency on Aging, which subcontracts with the state’s 10 other Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) to function as individual parts of the ADRC.
In addition to the localized services provided through the AAAs, the Department of Aging and Disability Services, Community Service and Programs Division administers the state’s home-and-community-based Medicaid waiver programs.
Medicaid Waiver Programs for Assisted Living and In-Home Care
Kansas Home and Community-Based Services for the Frail Elderly (HCBS Frail & Elderly Waiver)
The Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Frail Elderly (FE) waiver program provides an option for Kansas seniors who receive Medicaid and qualify functionally to receive community-based services as an alternative to nursing facility care. Services include personal care, household tasks, and health services. The program promotes independence within the community and helps to offer residency in the most integrated environment.
Services included in the Frail Elderly (FE) Waiver: Adult Day Care; Assistive Technology; Attendant Care Services; Comprehensive Support; Financial Management Services; Home Telehealth; Medication Reminder; Nursing Evaluation Visits; Oral health services; Personal Emergency Response; Sleep Cycle Support; and Wellness Monitoring
Generally, to qualify for the Frail Elderly waiver, the applicant must meet the following criteria: 1) the applicant must be 65 years old, 2) meet Medicaid income eligibility guidelines, and 3) meet the Medicaid long-term care threshold.
- Health: The applicant must require a Nursing Home Level of Care. The cost of care is not a factor in determining the eligibility of an applicant who requires a nursing home level of care.
- Financial: Kansas’ Frail Elderly waiver has certain asset and income limits for an applicant, which in this case are the same as those receiving Medicaid assistance for long-term care in a nursing home. For 2022, an individual applicant’s Special Income Limit (SIL) is $2,523 (or 300% of the Federal Benefit Rate, or FBR). An applicant’s asset or resource limit is $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 if the applicant is married and applying as a couple. Kansas does not allow a Miller Trust, or Qualified Income Trust, to help bring an applicant’s income within the limit. Kansas also allows individuals to qualify through the “medically needy” category without a spend-down provision. For the non-applicant spouse, or “community spouse,” there are rules and requirements that apply to assets and other allowances. For 2022, the Community Spouse Resource Allowance (CSRA) – the amount the non-applicant spouse can keep in assets – is $137,400. In addition, the community spouse is allowed to keep a monthly income for personal expenses and other living needs, known as the maximum monthly maintenance needs allowance, or MMMNA. For 2022, the MMMNA is $3,435 per month.
There is currently no waitlist for the Frail Elderly waiver, and the application process generally has the normal asset and income limits for applicants who apply under the Special Income Limit. Suppose the applicant qualifies or is financial eligibility under the medically needy category. In that case, the income level of $727 is a strict cut-off, and the applicant will have to spend their own money on services to qualify.
Kansas is good for using Medicaid long-term care resources to help seniors who choose to live in their own homes or a community or assisted living setting. The fact that there is no waitlist is significant, and Kansas is one of the few states where no waitlist exists for the HCBS waiver that targets the senior population over 65 years of age. Furthermore, given the strict financial criteria for eligibility and lack of a Miller Trust vehicle for income limits, a Medicaid Planning specialist can assist an applicant with strategies that may help them save money if deciding to apply for the waiver.
Access all state Medicaid Waiver pages.