Additional Distribution from CARES Act Provider Relief Fund

April 24, 2020

By: Eric N. Fischer, Jason L. Giles

Earlier this week, HHS announced another $20 billion in payments for the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund. This allocation is in addition to the previous allocation of $30 billion from the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund which made payments to healthcare providers based on 2019 Medicare reimbursements. This latest distribution is designed to augment the previous allocation so that the cumulative $50 billion is allocated proportionately to 2018 revenue for healthcare providers. A portion of providers will automatically receive funds on April 24 based on revenue data they have submitted to CMS. Providers that have not previously submitted revenue data to CMS will need to submit their revenue information to a portal opening this week. Providers who automatically receive their funds will still need to submit revenue information for verification. Providers receiving funds from this second distribution will also need to sign an attestation confirming that they have received the funds, agree to the Terms and Conditions and confirm the CMS cost report.


HHS has also allocated portions of the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund for certain targeted initiatives. $10 billion has been allocated to hospitals that have heavily impacted by COVID-19. It is anticipated that hospitals in the New York City metropolitan area will receive a significant portion of this funding. Targeted hospitals will provide information to HHS for a determination of need. HHS will reach out to hospitals that are eligible to apply for funding.


A portion of the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund has also been allocated toward reimbursement of healthcare providers for treatment of uninsured COVID-19 patients. Every healthcare provider who has provided treatment for uninsured COVID-19 patients on or after February 4, 2020, can request reimbursement through the program and will be reimbursed at Medicare rates, subject to available funding. Treatment eligible for reimbursement includes: Specimen collection, diagnostic and antibody testing, Testing-related visits including in the following settings: office, urgent care or emergency room or via telehealth, Treatment: office visit (including via telehealth), emergency room, inpatient, outpatient/observation, skilled nursing facility, long-term acute care (LTAC), acute inpatient rehab, home health, DME (e.g., oxygen, ventilator), emergency ground ambulance transportation, non-emergent patient transfers via ground ambulance, and FDA approved drugs as they become available for COVID-19 treatment and administered as part of an inpatient stay, and a vaccine (when available). Healthcare providers will be eligible to register for the program on April 27, 2020 and claims will be able to be submitted in early May.


$10 billion of the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund will be used for rural health clinics and hospitals. This money will be distributed as early as next week on the basis of operating expenses, using a methodology that distributes payments proportionately to each facility and clinic.


$75 billion in additional funding was appropriated for the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund in the Paycheck Protection Program and Healthcare Enhancement Act passed on April 23. Additional information on the additional appropriation is available here.


If you have any questions about these programs please contact your Nyemaster Goode attorney.



Additional CARES Act Coverage: