The American Rescue Plan Act: Opportunities for Improving Home- and Community-Based Services for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs

Authors Catalyst Center

Date 2021

Keywords Covid-19, CYSHCN, Financing, Medicaid/CHIP

The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law on March 11, 2021. Provisions in this legislation have the potential to expand and strengthen Home- and Community-Based Services (HCBS) for children enrolled in Medicaid, in turn strengthening the systems of services for children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN).

The ARPA gives states the option of receiving extra financial support for providing HCBS to Medicaid beneficiaries. Specifically, the law provides for a 10-percentage point increase in the state’s Federal Medical Assistance Percentage, or FMAP. States must use the additional funds they receive under the ARP FMAP increase to expand and enhance HCBS for Medicaid beneficiaries.

This Catalyst Center explainer provides an overview of the ARPA HCBS provision and its potential implications for CYSHCN.