HHS Expands Provider Relief Fund Eligibility

October 23, 2020

The Department of Health & Human Services (“HHS”) announced on October 22, 2020 that it is expanding Provider Relief Fund eligibility for Phase 3 General Distribution funding to include providers across a wider range of provider-types regardless of whether such providers accept Medicare or Medicaid payments.  Phase 3 General Distribution funding, which was originally announced on October 1, 2020, includes an additional $20 billion available for providers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

What provider-types are now eligible for the Provider Relief Fund?

Phase 3 General Distribution funding originally included the following providers:

  • 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.
  • 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.

HHS is now expanding the pool of eligible applicants for Phase 3 funding to include the following:

  • Behavioral Health Providers;
  • Allopathic & Osteopathic Physicians;
  • Dental Providers;
  • Assisted Living Facilities;
  • Chiropractors;
  • Nursing Service and Related Providers;
  • Hospice Providers;
  • Respiratory, Developmental, Rehabilitative and Restorative Service Providers;
  • Emergency Medical Service Providers;
  • Hospital Units;
  • Residential Treatment Facilities;
  • Laboratories;
  • Ambulatory Health Care Facilities;
  • Eye and Vision Services Providers;
  • Physician Assistants & Advanced Practice Nursing Providers;
  • Nursing & Custodial Care Facilities; and
  • Podiatric Medicine & Surgery Service Providers.

For a more detailed description of how to determine eligibility and information about the application process, please visit the Provider Relief Fund’s website here.

What is the application deadline?

All Phase 3 applicants will have until 11:59 p.m. EST on November 6, 2020 to submit applications for payment consideration. Once validated, each provider will receive a baseline payment of approximately 2% of its annual revenue from patient care plus an add-on payment that considers changes in the provider’s operating revenues and expenses from patient care, including expenses incurred related to COVID-19. 

What additional requirements apply?

All payment recipients will be required to attest to receiving the Phase 3 General Distribution payment and accept the associated Terms and Conditions.  The application and attestation portal can be found here, and the terms and conditions here.

Did HHS provide any additional updates about the Provider Relief Fund?

Yes, HHS is amending the reporting instructions to increase flexibility for providers so they can apply Provider Relief Fund distributions toward lost revenues attributable to COVID-19.  After reimbursing healthcare related expenses attributable to COVID-19 that were unreimbursed by other sources, providers may use remaining Provider Relief Fund distribution funds to cover any lost revenue, measured as a negative change in year-over-year actual revenue from patient care related sources. HHS’s amended reporting requirements guidance can be found here.