Relief for Medicaid providers is on its way, as the HHS announced yesterday that it will distribute set relief funds to providers. Along with the relief the HHS or U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced relief fund payments for safety-net hospitals as well as CHIP providers. Those receiving the relief are those who participate in state Medicaid and CHIP programs and have not received a payment from the Provider Relief Fund General Allocation.
Relief for Medicaid providers From Bipartisan Acts
The relief for Medicaid providers is set at $15 billion, but the HHS is also distributing $10 billion in Provider Relief Funds to the safety-net hospitals. This distribution of funds to the safety net hospitals is expected to happen this week. “Healthcare providers who focus on treating the most vulnerable Americans, including low-income and minority patients, are absolutely essential to our fight against COVID-19,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “HHS is using funds from Congress, secured by President Trump, to provide new targeted help for America’s safety-net providers and clinicians who treat millions of Medicaid beneficiaries.” The support is provided to the healthcare providers through the bipartisan CARES Act and the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act. The Act allocates $175 billion in relief funds to hospitals and other healthcare providers who have been impacted by the current pandemic.
Funds For Safety-Net Hospitals
The $10 billion allocations for safety-net hospitals will go to those that serve a disproportionate number of Medicaid patients or those with large amounts of uncompensated care. Hospitals that qualify will have:
- A Medicare Disproportionate Payment Percentage (DPP) of 20.2 percent or greater;
- Average Uncompensated Care per bed of $25,000 or more. For example, a hospital with 100 beds would need to provide $2,500,000 in Uncompensated Care in a year to meet this requirement;
- The profitability of 3 percent or less, as reported to CMS in its most recently filed Cost Report.
Recipients will receive a minimum distribution of $5 million and a maximum distribution of $50 million.
The HHS has also asked hospitals to update information on COVID-19 positive inpatient admissions from January 1st – June 10th in order to determine eligibility for funding under the $10 billion distribution for a second round of funding.