The Provider Relief Fund is a $100 billion infusion of cash to hospitals and healthcare providers on the front lines of the Coronavirus pandemic. The fund is part of the $2 trillion-dollar CARES Act signed into law on March 27, 2020. $30 billion of the relief fund was made immediately available to providers to support healthcare related expenses and lost revenues. Payments began hitting providers accounts on April 10, 2020.
Who Qualifies for the Provider Relief Fund?
All facilities and providers that received Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) payments in 2019 are eligible under the relief fund. However, as a condition of receiving funds providers must agree to not seek out-of-pocket payments from a COVID-19 patient that are greater than their normal in-network expenses. Providers must also complete an attestation form acknowledging receipt of the funds. Provided the facility or provider follow the terms and conditions set up by Health and Human Services (HHS), the relief funds will not need to be repaid.
How are the Payments Determined?
Payments are based on a providers or facilities total Medicare FFS reimbursements in 2019 with payments being made to facilities or providers according to their Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN). To calculate your estimated payment, divide your total Medicare FFS payments in 2019 by the total FFS payments in 2019 – $484,000,000, 000 and multiply that ratio by the $30,000,000,000 available for payout.
HHS use the following calculation example on their website:
- A community hospital billed Medicare FFS $121 million in 2019. To determine how much they would receive, use this equation:
- $121,000,000/$484,000,000,000 x $30,000,000,000 = $7,500,000
Payments are issued automatically to accounts on file. If you traditionally receive paper payments, you will be issued a check.
Completing Your Attestation for the Provider Relief Fund
If you are eligible for a relief fund payment, you must sign an attestation confirming receipt of the funds and agreeing to the terms and conditions of the payment within 30 days of receipt of the funds. You will be asked to provide your TIN on the attestation paperwork. If you elect to reject the funds, you are still required to complete that attestation paperwork and return the funds within 30 days of receipt.
For additional information, please visit the HHS website.