CalAIM Community Supports: Promoting Independent Living Among Older Adults and People with Disabilities

Citation: Janoski, B.E., Kordomenos, C., Franco, N. CalAIM Community Supports: Promoting Independent Living Among Older Adults and People with Disabilities.

  • This is a Free Resource
  • | Brief/Report
  • | Evidence Review

Through CalAIM (California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal), a multiyear initiative to transform California’s Medi-Cal, or Medicaid, program, managed care plans (MCPs) now have the option to offer any of 14 Community Supports that provide person-centered services to address a variety of social drivers of health. The California Health Care Foundation released a report that provides an overview of six Community Supports that are most relevant to supporting independent living for older adults and people with disabilities. The aim of the report is to increase understanding of the services and increase their uptake over time. These Community Supports are:

  • Respite services
  • Nursing facility transition/diversion to assisted living facilities
  • Community transition services/nursing facility transition to a home
  • Personal care and homemaker services
  • Environmental accessibility adaptations (home modifications)
  • Medically supportive food/meals/medically tailored meals.

This report also discusses key considerations for and barriers to MCP uptake of Community Supports for independent living. To inform this report, ATI Advisory (ATI) conducted eight interviews with MCPs in California, as well as national plans with experience implementing the services of interest for older adults and people with disabilities. ATI also reviewed existing literature, state reports, MCP publications, and federal and state regulations to better understand the existing evidence base on the effectiveness of these services as well as opportunities and barriers to promote uptake.

Remaining sections provide an overview of the six Community Supports that help promote independent living, examples of MCPs and providers successfully implementing these services, and recommendations for California’s Department of Health Care Services and MCPs as they advance Community Supports and broader CalAIM reforms.