Key Facts About the CARES Provider Relief Fund

Author: Paul Singh

Update current as of April 10, 2020

As part of the CARES Act, the Department of Health & Human Services is distributing $30 billion to eligible providers starting April 10, 2020.  Here are a few key facts about the CARES Provider Relief Fund: 

– These are relief payments, not loans, and funds will not need to be repaid.

– All providers that received Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) payments in 2019 are eligible.

– Payments will be distributed proportionally based on your practice’s 2019 Medicare payments.  This does not include any commercial payments for Medicare Advantage plans. Total Medicare payments in 2019 were approximately $484 billion. 

Per HHS, you can calculate the amount you will receive by using the following formula: 2019 Medicare FFS payments/$484,000,000,000 x $30,000,000,000 = Relief Payment

– HHS has partnered with UnitedHealth Group/Optum to distribute the funds; payments will be made via direct deposit with “HHSPAYMENT” as the description if you have direct deposit setup with Optum or CMS.

– If you do not have direct deposit setup, you will receive a paper check in the mail in the coming weeks.

– Within 30 days of receiving your payment, you must sign an attestation confirming receipt.  There will be a portal to sign the attestation starting next week and the link will be available on the HHS website below:

The CARES legislation will provide $100 billion in relief to healthcare providers.  The Administration is still working on plans to distribute the remaining $70 billion, but intends to direct these funds to providers in areas largely impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, rural areas, those serving the Medicaid population, and providers serving uninsured Americans.

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