The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced that it will distribute a second round of funding from the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund to hospitals that have been highly impacted by COVID-19. Payments totaling $10 billion will go out to over 1,000 hospitals as early as July 20.
On June 8, HHS asked hospitals to submit data on their COVID-19 positive-inpatient admissions from January 1, through June 10. Using those data, HHS will distribute funds to hospitals with more than 161 COVID-19 admissions during this time period, which equates to one admission per day. It also will distribute funds to those hospitals that experienced a disproportionate intensity of COVID admissions (those that exceeded the average ratio of COVID admissions/bed). Hospitals will be paid $50,000 per eligible admission.
For more details on the announcement, see the HHS press release.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act included $175 billion in the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund to reimburse health care providers for health care-related expenses or lost revenues not otherwise reimbursed that are attributable to COVID-19. HHS previously distributed $12 billion to high-impact areas.
Our Take: In a statement, we thanked HHS for distributing additional CARES Act emergency relief funds to “hot spot” hospitals and health systems on the front lines in the fight against this pandemic. As we have urged, hospitals with high numbers of COVID-19 admissions need help immediately to help offset the significant costs incurred in treating COVID patients, along with managing financial losses due to lower patient visits for non-COVID care. However, since this distribution of funding for “hot spots” does not take into account the latest spike in cases and hospitalizations in some parts of the country, we look forward to working with the Administration to ensure that additional relief will be distributed to “hot spots” and all hospitals.
If you have questions, please contact AHA at 800-424-4301.