Home Health

HHS prepares $25.5 billion in pandemic aid to providers

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will make $25.5 billion available to health care providers impacted by the pandemic, with the application period opening Sept. 29.

This funding includes $8.5 billion in American Rescue Plan (ARP) resources for providers who serve rural Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or Medicare patients, and an additional $17 billion for Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Phase 4 for a broad range of providers who can document revenue loss and expenses associated with the pandemic, according to a CMS release Sept. 10.

Consistent with the requirements included in the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2020, PRF Phase 4 payments will be based on providers’ lost revenues and expenditures between July 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021.

 As part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s ongoing commitment to equity, and to support providers with the most need, PRF Phase 4 will reimburse smaller providers, who tend to operate on thin margins and often serve vulnerable or isolated communities, for their lost revenues and COVID-19 expenses at a higher rate compared to larger providers, according to the CMS release.

HHS also announced a final 60-day grace period to help providers come into compliance with their PRF reporting requirements if they fail to meet the deadline on Sept. 30, 2021, for the first PRF Reporting Time Period. While the deadlines to use funds and the Reporting Time Period will not change, HHS will not initiate collection activities or similar enforcement actions for noncompliant providers during this grace period.

For more information about eligibility requirements, the documents and information providers will need to complete their application, and the application process for PRF Phase 4 and ARP Rural payments, visit: https://www.hrsa.gov/provider-relief/future-payments.