Blog | Coronavirus

HHS issues various updates to Provider Relief Fund FAQs

Blog | Coronavirus

HHS issues various updates to Provider Relief Fund FAQs

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services hasn’t provided recent updates on the reporting timeline for Provider Relief Fund distributions, but it has updated the 60-page list of FAQs.

The latest updates modify previously communicated information rather than serving as new entries.

Among the policies that have been further clarified: HHS is authorized to recoup PRF payments that have not been returned by providers if the payments were made in error or exceeded lost revenue or expenses stemming from COVID-19.

Other updates clarify certain additional scenarios in which providers must attest to the PRF terms and conditions — namely, that funds were used to cover healthcare-related expenses or lost revenue attributable to COVID-19 and that those expenses or losses weren’t (or won’t be) reimbursed by other sources.

For example, a health system can receive PRF payments associated with hospitals that it sold or closed since filing its most recent tax return as long as it attests to the terms and conditions.

Other updates of note to the FAQs include:

  • Organizations that receive cost-based reimbursement may be eligible for PRF payments in some scenarios and must follow CMS instructions regarding submission of cost reports.
  • HHS is “collecting information on the losses and expenses associated with the first two quarters of 2020 for purposes of making additional General Distribution payments to those providers with demonstrated financial need.”

As for reporting on use of PRF funds, the HHS site continues to state, “At present, there is no deadline for completing registration in the portal. Recipients will later receive a notification about when they should complete the second step of submitting reporting requirements information on the use of funds.”

HHS continues to recommend that recipients of $10,000 or more in PRF payments register in the portal as soon as they can.

About the Author

Nick Hut

is a senior editor with HFMA, Westchester, Ill. (nhut@hfma.org).

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