HHS Announces an Additional $20 Billion In Provider Relief GrantsClient Alert
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) announced an additional $20 billion in new funding for providers on October 1, 2020. Eligible providers include those that have already received Provider Relief Fund payments as well as previously ineligible providers, such as those who began practicing in 2020, and an expanded group of behavioral health providers confronting the emergence of increased mental health and substance use issues exacerbated by the pandemic. The new Phase 3 General Distribution is designed to balance an equitable payment of 2% of annual revenue from patient care for all applicants plus an add-on payment to account for revenue losses and expenses attributable to COVID-19. All new applicants will need to attest to the Terms & Conditions.
Who is eligible to receive Phase 3 Funding?
- Providers who previously received, rejected or accepted a General Distribution Provider Relief Fund payment. Providers that have already received payments of approximately 2% of annual revenue from patient care may submit more information to become eligible for an additional payment.
- Behavioral Health providers, including those that previously received funding and new providers. The Phase 3 release specifically mentions that addiction counseling centers, mental health counselors, and psychiatrists will be able to receive funding but, presumably, a full list will be released soon.
- Healthcare providers that began practicing January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020. This includes Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, dentists, assisted living facilities and behavioral health providers.
What are the criteria for payment?
- All provider submissions will be reviewed to confirm they have received a Provider Relief Fund payment equal to approximately 2 percent of patient care revenue from prior general distributions. Applicants that have not yet received Relief Fund payments of 2 percent of patient revenue will receive a payment that, when combined with prior payments (if any), equals 2 percent of patient care revenue.
- With the remaining balance of the $20 billion budget, HRSA will then calculate an equitable add-on payment that considers the following:
- A provider’s change in operating revenues from patient care;
- A provider’s change in operating expenses from patient care, including expenses incurred related to coronavirus; and
- Payments already received through prior Provider Relief Fund distributions.
What is the application period?
- October 5, 2020 through November 6, 2020.
- HHS encourages providers to apply early to expedite HHS’s review process and payment calculations.