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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Healthcare providers who serve Oklahomans with developmental disabilities and low-income seniors will now receive a little help from the state.

Oklahoma Human Services announced a retroactive rate adjustment for Medicaid Waiver providers. The one-time payment will aid providers with increased costs related to personal protective equipment and unprecedented overtime directly related to serving the community during the coronavirus pandemic.

“COVID-19 has reinforced the commitment of providers who serve people with developmental disabilities to be the 24/7 community system ensuring health and safety needs are met,” said Pat Ownbey, Executive Director of Oklahoma Community-Based Providers. “We are abundantly appreciative to the leadership of OKDHS for valuing services for our people, and providing relief and support so we may continue to stand and serve as this pandemic intensifies.” 

Payments will be a one-time 20% retroactive rate adjustment for services rendered April 1, 2020 through Sept. 30, 2020. It will be issued on Feb. 21, 2021 after all of the approval processes have been completed.

“We want to make this commitment today to our providers who serve as the community side of the long-term care industry, because they need assurance of our support as they prepare for the coming months,” said Samantha Galloway, OKDHS Chief of Staff and Operations. 

Providers don’t need to do anything other than have all of their billing complete and up-to-date for the applicable timeframe by Jan. 1, 2021.

OKDHS’ partner agency, the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, will recycle claims and will make the lump sum payment on the agency’s behalf by the end of Feb. 2021.

“These are challenging times and knowing we have a true partnership in serving Oklahoma’s vulnerable seniors alongside OKDHS has been unprecedented,” said Lola Edwards, Home and Community-Based Services Council President.