Revision 22-3; Effective Sept. 9, 2022

An individual applicant or member must meet the following criteria to be eligible for the Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP):

  • be birth through 20;
  • live in Texas;
  • have an approved medical necessity (MN) for a nursing facility (NF) level of care (LOC);
  • have a need for at least one MDCP service not being addressed by other existing services and supports;
  • not be enrolled in another waiver program;
  • live in an appropriate living situation;
  • have a STAR Kids individual service plan (SK-ISP) with services under the established cost limit; and
  • have full Medicaid eligibility.

Refer to Appendix XIX, Mutually Exclusive Services, to determine if two services may be received simultaneously by an individual, applicant or member.

1200.1 Texas Administrative Code Medically Dependent Children Program Eligibility Requirements

Revision 22-3; Effective Sept. 9, 2022 

An individual, applicant or member must meet the following criteria as stated in Title 1 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Section 353.1155 to be eligible for the Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP):

  • be under 21 years old; 
  • reside in Texas; 
  • meet the level of care criteria (LOC) for medical necessity (MN) for nursing facility (NF) care as determined by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC); 
  • have an unmet need for support in the community that can be met through one or more MDCP services; 
  • choose MDCP as an alternative to NF services, as described in 42 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Section 441.302(d)
  • not be enrolled in one of the following Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waiver programs approved by the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS): 
    • the Community Living Assistance and Support Services (CLASS) Program; 
    • the Deaf Blind with Multiple Disabilities (DBMD) Program; 
    • the Home and Community-based Services (HCS) Program; 
    • the Texas Home Living (TxHmL) Program; or 
    • the Youth Empowerment Services waiver; 
  • live in: 
  • be determined by HHSC to be financially eligible for Medicaid under Chapter 358 of this title (relating to Medicaid Eligibility for the Elderly and People with Disabilities).

An applicant receiving NF Medicaid will be approved for MDCP if the applicant:

  • requests services while residing in a NF; and 
  • meets the eligibility criteria listed above.

1210 Medical Necessity Determination

Revision 23-4; Effective Aug. 21, 2023

A Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) applicant or member must have a valid medical necessity (MN) determination for a nursing facility (NF) level of care (LOC) to meet MDCP eligibility criteria. The MN determination is based on a completed STAR Kids Screening and Assessment Instrument (SK-SAI).

The managed care organization (MCO) completes and submits the SK-SAI to the Texas Medicaid & Healthcare Partnership (TMHP) through the TMHP Long Term Care Online Portal (LTCOP). The TMHP nurse or physician processes the SK-SAI and determines the applicant’s or member’s Resource Utilization Group (RUG) value and MN. The MCO uses the SK-SAI to create the applicant or member’s STAR Kids individual service plan (SK-ISP). The SK-ISP lists the applicant or member’s services and preferences for care. The cost of the applicant or member’s MDCP services listed on the SK-ISP must be at or under the RUG value.

Program Support Unit (PSU) staff do not calculate the SK-ISP cost limit. TMHP LTCOP automatically calculates the cost limit based on the RUG value. PSU staff must verify the applicant or member’s SK-ISP is within the cost limit by verifying the Total Estimated Waiver Costs is less than the Annual Cost Limit in the TMHP LTCOP SK-ISP.

PSU staff must upload all applicable documents to the Texas Health and Human Services (HHS) Enterprise Administrative Report and Tracking System (HEART) case record following the instructions in Appendix XVIII, STAR Kids HEART Naming Conventions. PSU staff must document all actions and verifications in the HEART case record.
 

1210.1 Texas Administrative Code Medical Necessity Determination Requirements

Revision 22-3; Effective Sept. 9, 2022 

Medical necessity (MN) is the prerequisite for participation in the Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP). An individual, applicant or member must meet the following criteria as stated in Title 26 of the Texas Administrative Code at Section 554.2401 to meet the MN criteria for participation in MDCP. MN exists when an individual, applicant or member meets the conditions described below:

  • The person must demonstrate a medical condition that: 
    • is sufficiently serious that the person's needs exceed the routine care which may be given by an untrained person; and 
    • requires licensed nurses' supervision, assessment, planning, and intervention that are available only in an institution. 
  • The person must require medical or nursing services that: 
    • are ordered by a physician; 
    • are dependent upon the person's documented medical conditions; 
    • require the skills of a registered or licensed vocational nurse; 
    • are provided either directly by or under the supervision of a licensed nurse in an institutional setting; and 
    • are required on a regular basis.

1210.2 Medical Necessity Approval Time Frame for Initial Eligibility Determinations

Revision 23-4; Effective Aug. 21, 2023

A medical necessity (MN) approval is valid for 120 days from the Texas Medicaid & Healthcare Partnership (TMHP) MN approval date for an initial applicant. The managed care organization (MCO) must complete a new initial STAR Kids Screening and Assessment Instrument (SK-SAI) if the applicant is not enrolled in the Medicaid for Dependent Children Program (MDCP) within 120 days from the MN approval. Refer to Section, 2002.2 Medical Necessity Approval Time Frame for Initial Eligibility Determinations, for more information.

1220 Individual Cost Limit

Revision 23-3; Effective May 22, 2023

A Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) applicant or member’s STAR Kids individual service plan (SK-ISP) must fall within the applicant or member’s cost limit. The managed care organization (MCO) conducts a STAR Kids Screening and Assessment Instrument (SK-SAI) to assess the applicant or member. The Texas Medicaid & Healthcare Partnership (TMHP) processes the SK-SAI and determines the applicant or member’s Resource Utilization Group (RUG) value and medical necessity (MN) for MDCP. The cost of the applicant or member’s MDCP services listed on the SK-ISP must be at or under the RUG value.

Program Support Unit (PSU) staff must not calculate the SK-ISP cost limit as it is automatically calculated in the TMHP LTCOP SK-ISP Annual Cost Limit field.

PSU staff must refer to 1 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Section 353.1155, and the STAR Kids Handbook (SKH) for more information about the MDCP cost limit.

1230 Unmet Need for at Least One Medically Dependent Children Program Service

Revision 18-0; Effective September 4, 2018

The §1915(c) Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) waiver specifies that individuals must have a need for at least one MDCP service to receive MDCP waiver services. For initial and continued eligibility for the MDCP, a member must have an unmet need for, and therefore use, at least one MDCP service during the individual service plan (ISP) year. Therefore, an MDCP ISP which has $0.00 as the “Total Est. Waiver Cost” at the bottom of Form 2604, STAR Kids Individual Service Plan – Service Tracking Tool, will be rejected. Members who do not use at least one MDCP service per ISP year are subject to disenrollment from the waiver. For members without Supplemental Security Income (SSI) (i.e., medical assistance only (MAO) members), disenrollment from the MDCP waiver may result in a loss of Medicaid eligibility.

Individuals certified for medical assistance only (MAO) Medicaid by the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) receiving Community First Choice (CFC) services through a §1915(c) Medicaid waiver program must meet eligibility requirements stated in 42 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §441.510(d). This CFR rule mandates that individuals who qualify for MAO Medicaid must meet all MDCP waiver requirements and also must receive one MDCP waiver service per month.

1240 Age

Revision 18-0; Effective September 4, 2018

To be eligible to participate in the Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP), an applicant or member must be under age 21.

1250 Citizenship and Identity Verification

Revision 18-0; Effective September 4, 2018

As part of Public Law 109-171, Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, each U.S. citizen eligible for Medicaid is required to provide proof of U.S. citizenship and identity. This requirement affects all long term services and supports (LTSS) members whose financial eligibility is based on a determination from the Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD) specialists. Verification of citizenship and identity for Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) eligibility purposes is a one-time activity conducted by Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD), as documented in the MEPD HandbookChapter D-5000, Citizenship and Identity. Once verification of citizenship is established and documented by MEPD specialists, verification is no longer required even after a break in eligibility. Therefore, applicants who are active Medicaid, Medicare or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients do not require citizenship verification since verification occurred upon entry of those programs.

1260 Living Arrangement and Texas Residency

Revision 18-0; Effective September 4, 2018

The applicant or member must be a Texas resident to be eligible for Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) services as outlined in Title 1 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §353.1155(b)(1)(B), Medically Dependent Children Program.

If the applicant is under age 18, the applicant must not live in a foster home that includes more than four children unrelated to the applicant, as outlined in Title 1 TAC §353.1155(b)(1)(G)(ii).

Managed care organization (MCO) service coordinators must confirm the applicant or member, if under age 18, lives with a family member, such as a parent, guardian, grandparent or sibling, as defined in the Glossary. The MCO service coordinator must review guardianship documentation or obtain a statement from the applicant, member, legally authorized representative (LAR), authorized representative (AR) or family member regarding relation. The MCO service coordinator must maintain this documentation in the member’s case file.

1270 Financial Eligibility

Revision 23-3; Effective May 22, 2023

Title 1 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Section 353.1155 states that an individual, applicant or member must be financially eligible for Medicaid toss receive the Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP).

Program Support Unit (PSU) staff reviews Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) to determine if a Medicaid financial eligibility determination is required.

An MDCP individual who is not already Medicaid eligible must complete Form H1200, Application for Assistance  – Your Texas Benefits, to be evaluated for Medicaid financial eligibility. PSU staff fax the completed Form H1200 to the Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD) specialist within two business days from receipt of the application. The MEPD specialist has 45 days (or up to 90 days if it is necessary to obtain a disability determination) to complete the application process.

An individual without Medicaid must return a completed and signed Form H1200 within 30 days from the mail date of the application. PSU staff must mail Form 2606, Managed Care Enrollment Processing Delay, and Form H1200 to the individual within two business days from: 

  • the 30th day of the mail date of the application, if the individual has not returned Form H1200; or
  • upon receipt of an unsigned Form H1200. 

PSU staff denies the individual within two business days from the 30th day of the date Form 2606 was mailed if the individual did not return the signed and completed Form H1200. PSU staff must check TIERS to ensure Form H1200 was not mailed directly to the MEPD specialist before denying the individual.