Single Source Procurement: MFP - Access to Court Appointed Guardians

Pursuant to New York State Finance Law § 163.10(b), The New York State Department of Health is presenting the following summary of relevant circumstances, and material and substantial reasons why a competitive procurement was not feasible.

The Money Follows the Person (MFP) Demonstration was created by section 6071 of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, and extended through FFY 2016 by Section 2403 of the Affordable Care Act. The Demonstration provides enhanced Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) reimbursement for select services provided to persons transitioning from a nursing home to community based care, after having been in the nursing home for more than ninety days. In 2007, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved New York State's participation in the Demonstration. The additional federal funds must be used to offset the cost of long term care system reform activities.

For indigent people with disabilities and seniors who have been adjudicated by a court as incapacitated, the inability to locate a legal guardian can create an artificial barrier to community care as an alternative to unwanted institutionalization. Article 81 of the NYS Mental Hygiene Law governs guardianship, providing that the court may appoint a private attorney or a guardianship program if no family member or friend is willing to serve as a guardian. While thousands of incapacitated, low-income individuals are in need of guardians, there is no public guardianship program available in the State. Since most guardianship programs accept appointments only for those already living in the community, institutionalized individuals' lack of guardianship options are further restricted. To address this barrier to access to community based care, a portion of the MFP funds will be used to support the Access to Court Appointed Guardians Project. Specifically, this request is for approval for a time and cost extension to the single source contract with the Vera Institute of Justice.

The Vera Institute for Justice is the only guardianship program in New York that strives to move low income clients who wish to transition from a nursing home or to remain in their home community through an innovative guardianship model that provides critical services to vulnerable, impoverished and legally incapacitated New Yorkers. The current Guardianship Project delivers a full spectrum of intensive services, regardless of the client's ability to pay for their legal services. In keeping with the intent of the MFP Demonstration, this continued project is designed to expand these needed guardianship services to other areas of New York State to address this particular barrier to community based care. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services specifically approved the Vera Institute for Justice to implement this project.

Procurement / Program Name Money Follows the Person Demonstration (MFP) - Access to Court Appointed Guardians
Contractor Name(s) Vera Institute of Justice, Inc.
Contract Period 1/1/2014 – 9/30/2015
Contract Number(s) C027979