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MATP for PRS to Continue
July 13, 2011

The Medical Assistance Transportation Program (MATP) has reversed a policy decision to stop MATP for psychiatric rehabilitation services (PRS). A directive from MATP was issued to county programs instructing them to halt transportation services to PRS by mid-July. The reason given was that PRS was not approved for MATP as it was not a Medical Assistance in-plan service.  Stakeholders have raised objections, arguing that the cost of transportation is far less than costs that would result if people cannot access this service. A coalition of stakeholders, including PCPA, sent a letter to Secretary Alexander requesting that the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) continue services for 90-days while the policy was reviewed and/or alternative transportation services could be identified.

On July 8 PCPA received notice that MATP services would continue. A memorandum from Tyrone Williams, director of MATP, requested vendors to continue to coordinate trips to PRS “to ensure a seamless transition” and referenced an email from Acting Deputy Secretary Sherry Snyder to HealthChoices behavioral health managed care organizations (BH-MCO) and county administrators. The email restated the MATP’s decision to discontinue service since PRS had not been included in the Medicaid State Plan and because MATP received a large reduction in the 2011/12 budget. Snyder requested that BH-MCOs and counties cover the cost for PRS transportation. The cost could be included in an adjusted unit rate for PRS or available reinvestment funds could be used to purchase vehicles. OMHSAS and stakeholders will “assess the financial impact for each plan and address as appropriate through future rate-setting discussions.” PCPA understands that MATP will continue through the end of July as alternatives are finalized.  

PCPA encourages members who provide PRS and whose participants use MATP to work with counties and BH-MCOs to ensure that transportation can continue.

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