Reminder: Regional Variance Factor to be Updated in DWRS

By Ken Bence posted 06-29-2022 17:12

As I posted in this blog on May 24, the Regional Variance Factor (RVF) in the Disability Waiver Rate System (DWRS) will be updated as of July 1, and will have an impact on rates calculated in the DWRS. The DHS bulletin on this change included a list of the new factors.

As I described previously, the RVF is based in statute and is updated every 6 years. Factors are calculated in each of the 4 service buckets for each of the 12 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in Minnesota, and are a reflection of how the average median DWRS wages for each MSA compare to the statewide median. When the regional median is less than the statewide median, the factor will be less than 1, and conversely, when the regional median is greater than the statewide median, the factor will be greater than 1.

I have made a chart that shows how the new factors compare to the ones that are currently in place. If the new factor is less than the current one, the overall daily rate will change in a downward direction, and if the new factor is greater than the current one, the rate will change in an upward direction. Because the factors are based on the geographical region in which the individual lives, all individuals supported in the same program will see a rate change in the same direction (up or down). Providers should be aware that these changes are showing up for services agreements that are effective on or after July 1.

Contact me if you have any questions.

-Ken Bence, Director of Research, Analysis and Policy