The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has extended the deadline for health care providers to attest to receipt of Provider Relief Fund payments to 45 days or they can return the funds. If providers do not attest or return the payment within 45 days of receipt, it will be viewed as acceptance of the terms and conditions. Previously, providers were required to attest and accept the terms and conditions within 30 days of receipt of the payment.
Why does this matter to allergists? There is currently some ambiguity on reporting requirements associated with accepting these funds, and we are hoping for more guidance from HHS on this topic. So far, the details we know are outlined in point #5 in the Terms and Conditions document:
The Recipient shall submit reports as the Secretary determines are needed to ensure compliance with conditions that are imposed on this Payment, and such reports shall be in such form, with such content, as specified by the Secretary in future program instructions directed to all Recipients.
As a result, some allergy practices may want to wait to attest to see if HHS provides additional guidance about reporting requirements first. However, keep in mind that additional funds were recently allocated to this program. Practices that previously received funds and are interested in receiving additional funds must apply for them via the Provider Relief Fund application portal. In order to apply for additional funds, practices will first be required to attest for funds already received.
The CARES Act, Paycheck Protection Program and the Health Care Enhancement Act provide expense and lost revenue relief attributable to COVID-19 to health care providers, as well as ensuring that uninsured Americans receive treatment for COVID-19. These programs were enacted to address the economic impact of COVID-19 on the health care system as quickly and transparently as possible.
Visit the HHS Provider Relief web page for more information on the allocations. Recipients of payments from any of these programs must attest and accept the Terms and Conditions within 45 days of receipt.