COVID-19 Activities and Actions Update

As part of the ongoing White House Coronavirus Task Force efforts, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and other agencies have issued several resource documents, refocused activities related to state survey agencies and accrediting organizations, and taken other related actions. Key updates from this past week include:

The Office of the Inspector General has announced a new audit to examine the effectiveness of HHS controls over the awarding and distribution of Provider Relief Funds through the General Distribution.

HHS has updated their FAQ document about the Provider Relief Fund to include answers related to eligibility, payment appeals and the publication of payment data. Updated answers are date and have been added to the document. 

To be eligible for additional funds from the $50 billion General Distribution, eligible providers must submit revenue information by June 3, 2020.

HHS announced $225 million in additional funding for the nation’s 4,500 rural health clinics. This funding was appropriated through the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act.

In response to the Administration’s goal of providing a vaccine by January under Operation Warp Speed, HHS and AstraZeneca have announced a collaborative partnership to expedite the delivery of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. 

HHS has announced an additional extension for providers to accept the Terms and Conditions for Provider Relief Fund payments. With this announcement, providers now have 90 days from the date they received payment to accept the terms.

CMS has updated its guidance for providers after creating new codes for laboratories to bill for certain COVID-19 lab tests. The agency clarified that there is no cost sharing for Medicare patients for any of these updated lab testing codes.

An inventory of these documents and more is available here: McDermottPlus COVID Guidance Tracker.

CMS is documenting its COVID-19 activities on their Current Emergencies website.

Stay up-to-date on COVID-19 emerging issues through the McDermottPlus Coronavirus Resource Center or the McDermott, Will & Emery Coronavirus Resource Center.

 

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For more information visit the McDermottPlus Payment Innovation Resource Center or contact Sheila Madhani at 202-204-1459/smadhani@mcdermottplus.com, Mara McDermott at 202-204-1462/mmcdermott@mcdermottplus.com or Rachel Stauffer at 202-204-1460/rstauffer@mcdermottplus.com.