Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) is the term used to describe the variety of services available to help elders and people with disabilities remain living in their homes rather than move into residential care, assisted living or skilled nursing facility. HCBS includes adult day services, home care/home health care, hospice, Programs for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE), senior centers, Meals-on-Wheels, and transportation services among others.
In recent years, a number of federal programs have been created to increase the availability and use of Medicaid dollars for HCBS rather than what had become the prevailing national mindset of providing long-term care support for people in nursing homes. Motivation for this change is twofold:
- Most people prefer to remain in their homes and decide how to have their needs met;
- Growing demands for long-term care and services due to the spiraling increase in the aging population are outpacing federal and state budgets; home-based services are less costly than nursing homes.