In a conference held this afternoon, HHS announced four new funding allocations. The following allocations are intended to assist providers as they address the financial impact of caring for COVID-19 patients, as well as the loss of operational revenue from elective procedures.
The New Funding Allocations cover four areas:
- Rural; and
- General Allocation
General allocation contains $20B in new money to Health Care Providers on top of $30B previously disbursed. There will now be a total of $50B in general distributions for providers impacted by COVID-19. The general allocation will be based on 2018 revenue. While the first round of money was based on Medicare Fee for Service reimbursements in 2019, this $20B will be based on Net Patient Revenue from all sources in 2018. Providers will be required to submit revenue information via a portal HHS is launching this week.
The first wave of allocated funds will be received this week if provider revenue information is already available to CMS. Thereafter, payments will be made weekly on a rolling basis. Providers will be required to sign an attestation agreeing to the terms and conditions provided, as well as confirm receipt of the funds.
- Targeted Allocation
A Targeted allocation of $10B will be made to providers in areas with the highest impact of COVID-19 patients. Hospitals have received an email to provide the following information by 11:59 p.m. on April 23, 2020, including the following:
- Tax Identification Number;
- National Provider Identifier;
- Total Number of ICU beds as of 4/10/2020; and
- Total number of Positive COVID cases admitted from 1/1/20- 4/10/20.
- Rural Allocation
An allocation of $10B will be made for rural hospitals and health clinics. These funds will be based on facility operating expenses and could be received as early as next week.
- Indian Health Services Allocation
An allocation of $400 million for Indian Health Services has been designated to assist those impacted by COVID-19. As with rural providers, this allocation will be based on facility operating expenses and could also be distributed as early as next week.
Allocation for the Uninsured
In addition to the above new allocations, provisions will be made for treatment of the uninsured. To assist providers that have cared for COVID-19 patients on or after February 4, 2020 who are uninsured, claims reimbursement can be requested. There can be no balanced billing for uninsured patients.
Applicable providers can register for the program April 27, 2020. Once enrolled, and with claims found eligible, reimbursement for the care of these patients will be made at Medicare rates so long as funding remains available.
Q&A from the Conference
Question: Is the $10B in targeted funds exclusively for hospitals?
Answer: No. This allotment is intended to go across providers.
Question: In terms of Medicare Advantage providers that felt disadvantaged by the first disbursement, how will this be addressed?
Action: Moving to an overall revenue model, a percentage of revenue versus just Medicare Fee for Service, the next $20B is intended to address this issue.
Question: Are targeted monies just for positive COVID-19 cases or do they include suspected COVID-19 cases?
Answer: Actual and presumptive COVID-19 cases are the intended target.
Question: Has the Department made any determination on methodologies for future disbursements?
Answer: They’re trying to be equitable, fast, and fair.
For more information, please contact an Advis Expert at 708-478-7030
Published: April 22, 2020