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Policy Changes: Peoria, IL

WorkFORCE Action Grant

The Workforce Action Grant, in Peoria, Illinois is taking steps to ensure that individuals with serious mental illness have an opportunity to make work part of their recovery plan. Historically, Medicaid has not funded employment services, as they have not met the test of a "medical necessity". The Illinois Division of Mental Health, with the support of this project, has taken steps to change this and provide more opportunity for employment services and supports. Under the new interpretations of the state's rehabilitation option for mental health Medicaid, billing for various supportive employment activities are now covered under billable service codes, such as assessment and case management. The activities must be parallel to an individual's recovery goals. This is a major step towards the implementation of supportive employment statewide for individuals with serious mental illness.

In addition, the Illinois House of Representatives has recently passed a resolution that requires a study of the income limits for nursing home residents. In Illinois, residents of nursing homes have an income limit of $50.00 a month under Medicaid. This has greatly impeded the ability to assist individuals with serious mental illness, who reside in nursing homes to enter competitive employment. The Peoria grant has been actively involved in educating lawmakers on this issue.

For more information on these state initiatives please contact:

Michael Boyle
Project Director
mboyle@fayettecompanies.org

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