Initial distributions of emergency funding for Medicare healthcare providers begin on schedule

Money with a doctor's stethoscope

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) began delivering the initial $30 billion of the $100 billion in relief funding to healthcare providers that was mentioned in our earlier article on the CARES Act’s Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund.

All facilities and healthcare providers that received Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) reimbursements in 2019 are eligible for this initial distribution. Facilities and providers are allotted a portion of the $30 billion based on their share of 2019 Medicare FFS reimbursements. A condition of receiving these funds is that providers must agree not to seek collection of out-of-pocket payments from a COVID-19 patient in an amount greater than what the patient would have otherwise been required to pay if the care had been provided by an in-network provider.

Healthcare providers will be distributed a portion of the funds via ACH account information on file with UnitedHealth Group, UnitedHealthcare, or Optum Bank, or used for reimbursements from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Providers who normally receive a paper check for reimbursement from CMS will receive a paper check in the mail for this payment as well, within the next few weeks.

Within 30 days of receiving the payment, healthcare providers must sign an attestation confirming receipt of the funds and agreeing to the terms and conditions of payment. The terms and conditions are available here. The portal for signing the attestation is available here.

Additional information on the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund can be found here.

For assistance in navigating issues created by the COVID-19 pandemic, please contact your McAfee & Taft Healthcare attorney.