Medicaid HCBS Waivers in GA


Medicaid HCBS Waivers in GA

Medicaid Home and Community Based Service (HCBS) Waivers allow individuals to live in their own homes and communities as an alternative to hospitals, nursing facilities or Intermediate Care Facilities for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID).

Medicaid HCBS Waivers in Georgia

Section 1915(c) of the Social Security Act authorizes the Secretary of Health and Human Services to waive certain Medicaid rules. These waivers can allow states to pay for home and community-based services (HCBS) instead of services in institutions. HCBS waivers give states the flexibility to develop alternatives to placing people in hospitals, nursing facilities or Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID).

Georgia has several HCBS waivers that are approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for individuals who are Medicaid eligible. These waivers are not entitlements under Medicaid and therefore have waiting lists for services.

Community Options: A Guide to Georgia Medicaid Programs and Medicaid Waivers

ICWP: Independent Care Waiver

The Independent Care Waiver Program (ICWP) provides services that help adult Medicaid recipients with physical disabilities to live in their own homes or in the community instead of a hospital or nursing home. ICWP services are also available for persons with traumatic brain injuries (TBI).

To be eligible for The Independent Care Waiver an individual must be a Medicaid recipient between the ages of 21 and 64, with severe physical disabilities that substantially limits one or more activities of daily living and requires the assistance of another individual, and be capable of directing their own services. (individuals with a TBI do not have to meet this criteria).

To apply for ICWP, contact the Georgia Medical Care Foundation (GMCF) at 1-678-527-3619 or 1-800-982-0411, ext. 3619. GMCF will ask potential recipients questions over the phone, have them submit an application and schedule an in-person assessment. Based on the information provided, applicants may be eligible for ICWP and approved to receive services as funding becomes available.

As of 3/31/15, there were 1352 individuals receiving services from the ICWP and 125 on the waiting list.

CCSP: Community Care Service

CCSP assists the elderly and/or individuals with disabilities remain in their own homes and communities by providing a variety of services such as personal care, respite and meal delivery. Participants must meet the same medical, functional and financial eligibility criteria as for placement in a nursing facility under Medicaid and be approved by a physician.

The Division of Aging Services administer CCSP by contracting with 12 Area Agencies on Aging. For information and assistance, eligibility screening, and referral to community services and resources, contact your the Area Agency on Aging in your region.

As of 3/31/15, there were 10,364 individuals receiving services from the CCSP and 1900 on the waiting list.


The New Options Waiver (NOW) and the Comprehensive Supports Waiver Program (COMP) offer home and community-based services for people with a developmental or intellectual disability. A diagnosis of developmental disability can include closely-related conditions such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism or neurological problems if they require the level of care provided in an intermediate care facility for people with intellectual disabilities.

The NOW/COMP Waiver supports individuals in the community through a variety of services including therapies, behavioral supports, community living and access services, respite, residential supports and pre-vocational services.

As of October 2019, there were 13,000 individuals receiving services from the NOW /COMP waivers. 2400 of these individuals receive services through “Participant Direction.” There are 6048 individuals on the planning list for services

How to Apply for Services

Find out more about NOW/COMP Waiver

Learn about Participant Direction

Find your DBHDD Field Office

Read the NOW/COMP Policies and Procedures Manual