November 22nd, 2020

COVID-19 Guidance for Activities, Dining, and Volunteers for the Holidays (PL 20-53)

HHSC publishes Provider Letter 20-53 Guidance for Activities, Dining, and Volunteers (PDF). The letter outlines provider responsibilities for resident activities, including communal dining and holiday-related activities.

The letter also gives specific stipulations on the use of volunteers and guidance on the protocol for residents who leave a facility.

This guidance can be used as a general reference through the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.

November 22, 2020

HCS Training Webinars on the TAC Principals for November 2020

Future topics:
9.178 Quality Assurance
9.173 Rights of Individuals
9.174 Service Delivery
9.181 and 9.182 Administrative Penalties and Amelioration


October 11th, 2020

IPC COVID-19 Policy Guidance for CLASS, DBMD, HCS and TxHmL Programs         

HHSC is not requiring a face-to-face meeting with an individual or their legally authorized representative for individual plan of care revisions. This is per COVID-19 guidance IL-20-11.

In addition, until further notice by HHSC, signatures from the individual or the LAR on the IPC or supporting documentation is not required before submitting to HHSC.

All required signatories that are not the individual or LAR (SC and Provider Representative) must sign the IPC and supporting documentation before submission.

For meetings currently conducted by phone or videoconference to revise an IPC, required individual or LAR signatures on the IPC and supporting documentation can be done electronically, by fax, by mail, or in person if face-to-face restrictions have been lifted and it is safe to do so. If unable to obtain a signature by the methods mentioned, document the following:

  • The date of the meeting held by phone or videoconference
  • The reason for the meeting and what was discussed
  • If the individual or LAR agree with the services as indicated on the revised IPC

September 30th, 2020

Information Letter No. 20-42

Residential Services During COVID-19

HHSC has been informed that some individuals living in a three-person or four-person residence are temporarily staying with family during the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE). In accordance with the HCS Billing Guidelines, a program provider is unable to bill for residential support or supervised living if an individual is away from a three-person or four-person residence for longer than 14 consecutive days.
HHSC is in the process of seeking approval from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to make retainer payments to HCS program providers during the PHE for residential support and supervised living for up to 90 days an individual is absent from the residence in excess of the 14-consecutive day period. If CMS approves, HHSC will provide information to program providers about billing retainer payments for the period of March 20, 2020, through October 23, 2020, and conditions a program provider must meet to receive the payments. By October 5, 2020, HCS program providers must provide an electronic or hard copy of the attached letter to an individual (or the individual’s legally authorized representative) whose residential location is a three-person or four-person residence and who is temporarily staying with family because of the PHE.
Questions regarding this information letter can be directed to
The letter to send to the individual and their LAR’s is attached to information letter No-20-42
“…Since you have not received residential services for an extended period during the PHE, to ensure your individual service plan accurately reflects the services you need, you must decide to do one of the following by November 1, 2020
:•return to your three-person residence or four-person residence; or
•change your residential location from “three-person residence” or “four-person residence” to “own home/family home”;or
•change your residential location from “three-person residence” or “four-person residence” to “host home/companion care”
if your provider can contract with a person in your own home or family’s home to deliver the “host home/companion care” service. By November 1, 2020, your program provider will contact you about the decision you have made. If your decision is to change your residential location, the program provider will initiate revisions to your individual plan of care (IPC) and person-directed plan (PDP)…”
For more information and the complete letter to the individual and LAR’s, please see the entire information letter.

September 15th, 2020

Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation Competency Training and Exam

Now Available in Spanish!!   

HHSC’s Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation Competency Training and Exam is now available in Spanish.

This training is designed to meet the basic ANE training requirements for staff providing direct care in a community setting.

To access the training and exam:

  1. Go to the Texas HHS Learning Portal
  2. Staff members, service providers and volunteers must first sign up on the Learning Portal to access HHSC-approved trainings, if they have not already created an account.
  3. Click “Medicaid Long Term Services and Supports Training” and selectCurso para la prevención del abuso, negligencia y explotación (ANE) to access the ANE training and test in Spanish.

ANE Competency Training & Exam

The training and exam requirements for the following long-term services and supports programs can be found below:

Home and Community-Based Services

TAC §9.175 Certification Principles: Requirements Related to the Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation of an Individual

HCS Handbook Appendix XII, Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation Training and Competency Test

Texas Home Living

TAC §9.585 Certification Principles: Requirements Related to the Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation of an Individual

TxHmL Appendix IX, Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation Training and Competency Test

Reporting a Death to HHSC in the HCS/TxHmL Programs

September 3rd, 2020

To report a death, HCS/TxHmL providers should complete Form 8493, Notification Regarding a Death in HCS, TxHmL programs by the end of the next business day following the program provider becoming aware of the individual’s death. Then fax the completed form to HHSC to 512-206-3999according to the newest version of form 8493 that was updated in May of 2020.

FYI-The previous fax # was 512-438-4148, which is still noted on the HHSC website as of now.  Please make sure you are faxing to the fax # listed on form 8493.


August 10th, 2020

Administrative Penalties Update!

HHSC Postpones the Implementation of Administrative Penalty Rules for HCS and TxHmL Providers

Due to COVID-19, HHCS is delaying the implementation of the administrative penalty rules for HCS and TxHmL providers until January 1, 2021.

If you missed the most recent webinar for Home and Community-based Services and Texas Home Living providers Long-term Care Regulation to discuss questions and answers related to administrative penalties on July 9th, please register to watch recorded session below.

Register for the WSC Q&A Webinar Regarding Administrative Penalties.

If you missed the initial Joint Provider’s webinar on June 25th discussing Administrative Penalties, you may see the webinar recording of the session below. 

June 25, 2020

A recording of June 25, 2020, HCS and TxHmL Joint Provider Training on Administrative Penalty Rules webinar is available for those unable to attend.

View the webinar recording here

June 7th, 2019

Revised: IL20-11 Temporary Guidance Extended Through Oct. 30 for IPC’s & IDRC’s

To ensure people do not experience a gap in services due to the temporary suspension of face to face service coordination visits for COVID-19, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission will extend Intellectual Disability/Related Condition assessments and individual plans of care expiring at the end of June 2020. This is for people enrolled in the Home and Community- based Services Program or the Texas Home Living Program.

HHS revised IL20-11, Extensions of Eligibility and Individual Plan of Care Revisions for Individuals in HCS and TxHmL Due to COVID-19 (PDF). It was previously issued on March 26 and extends the temporary guidance through Oct. 30, 2020.

Call the IDD Program Enrollment Support message line at 512-438-2484 for ID/RC assessment questions.

Call the IDD Utilization Review message line at 512-438-5055 for IPC extension or revision.

Billing Guideline Updates For HCS

November 20, 2019

The HCS, TxHml, and CFC billing guidelines have been updated effective Nov. 15, 2019. A summary of the revisions can be found on page 25 of the CFC PDFpage 147 of the HCS PDF and page 129 of the TxHmL PDF. Send questions about the billing guidelines to

TAC Updates for HCS

Effective Oct. 1, 2019

Texas Administrative Code has been updated effective Oct. 1, 2019.

Locate program rule updates at 40 TAC Chapter 9 – Home and Community-based Services and Texas Home Living Programs and 40 TAC Chapter 49 Contracting for Community Services.

Send questions about rule updates to or and to
for 40 TAC Chapter 49 Contracting for Community Services.

Please pay particular attention to 9.175 (ANE Reporting Rules) in HCS and changes to Tac 9.178 Quality Assurance

Please see the link below to verify the current TAC changes.$ext.ViewTAC?tac_view=4&ti=40&pt=1&ch=9

. Both HCS and TxHmL rules can be accessed here.

Email with your questions.

HHSC Launches IDD Operations Portal for HCS, TxHmL, ICF-IID, CFC Non-Waiver Providers and LIDDAs

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission are pleased to announce the implementation of the Intellectual and Developmental Disability Operations Portal. Local Intellectual and Developmental Disability Authorities, Home and Community-based Services, Texas Home Living, Intermediate Care Facility for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities providers may begin registering to use the IDD Operations Portal starting April 1, 2019.

The IDD Operations Portal is an online system that allows secure submission of electronic documents to and from the IDD Program Eligibility and Support and IDD Utilization Review departments. This portal is not replacing any of the systems you use today, such as TMHP or CARE. It is intended to result in a more timely and efficient submission of documents, and allows providers to check the status of submissions online.

Staggered implementation is happening now. Providers and LIDDAs with DBAs starting with C-G can now register for portal access.

Please see the full implementation schedule detailed in the information letter listed here.