Beginning October 5th 2020, providers are able to apply for a “Phase 3” of funding from the Health and Human Services (HHS) Provider Relief Fund (PRF) – which was established under the CAREs (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act.
This new $20 Billion distribution is designed to ensure applicants first receive funds equal to 2% of annual patient revenue (from this or previous distributions) plus a potential add-on payment to account for any revenue losses and expenses attributable to COVID-19.
Providers that have already received Provider Relief Fund payments, as well as providers that may have previously been ineligible, are invited to apply for additional funding.
HHS announced that the following providers are eligible for Phase 3:
- Providers who previously received, rejected or accepted a General Distribution Provider Relief Fund payment. Providers who’ve already received 2% of patient revenue can still apply and potentially receive an add-on payment.
- Healthcare providers that began practicing January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020. This includes Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, dentists, assisted living facilities and behavioral health providers.
As noted, to distribute the funds available in Phase 3, HHS will first ensure that applicants received payment equal to approximately 2 percent of patient care revenue from prior general distributions. Then, with the remaining balance of this $20 billion, HHS will calculate an equitable add-on payment that considers changes in operating revenues and expenses from patient care as well as payments already received through prior PRF distributions.
Similar to previous rounds of PRF funding, providers will be required to attest to receiving Phase 3 distributions and accept the associated terms and conditions.
The passage of both the CAREs act and the Paycheck Protection Program/Health Care Enhancement Act allocated a total of $175 Billion towards the PRF. HHS already issued $100 Billion through earlier general and targeted distributions:
- $30 Billion for Phase 1 General Distribution (April 2020)
- $20 Billion for Phase 2 General Distribution (April 2020, reopened in August 2020)
- $50 Billion for various Targeted Distributions (Ongoing during 2020)
More funding for the PRF could be allocated in the future depending on the passage of the next COVID-19 relief passage in Congress.
How to apply
The application portal for Phase 3 will be available HERE beginning October 5th. Providers have until November 6th to submit their applications. According to new FAQs issued October 1st, any incomplete applications from Phase 2 will be cleared from the portal on October 4th at 11:00 pm EST. Providers still have the opportunity to complete and submit Phase 2 applications by that time.
HHS is encouraging providers to apply for Phase 3 as early as possible ahead of the November 6th, 2020 deadline in order to expedite the process of calculating and distributing payments.
PRF Reporting Requirements
All recipients of PRF payments are required to comply with reporting requirements which HHS recently released details available HERE.
- January 15th 2021 – reporting system will open to providers
- February 15, 2021 – first reporting deadline for all providers on use of funds
- July 31, 2021 – final reporting deadline for providers who did not fully expend PRF funds prior to December 31, 2020
For more information on the Phase 3 Distribution, CLICK HERE.
General information on the Provider Relief Fund is available HERE.
We expect HHS will make additional resources for PRF reporting, such as webinars and FAQs, available in the upcoming weeks.
As always, ADVOCATE will keep you up to date on this and all issues impacting medical groups as they become available.
Manager, Regulatory Affairs