On March 28, 2020, CMS issued a press release announcing an expansion of its existing accelerated payment program (APP) to assist Medicare participating health care providers and suppliers with access to emergency funding needed to support operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The APP expansion is just one relief effort that CMS has announced to help mitigate financial hardships of providers facing unexpected challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The press release includes an informational fact sheet on the APP process, eligibility criteria, and step-by-step guide on how to submit a request for the APP payment.
As described in the APP fact sheet, the expansion of this program is only for the duration of the public health emergency. The expanded APP authorizes CMS to provide accelerated/advanced payments during the period of the public health emergency to any Medicare participating provider or supplier who submits a request to the appropriate Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) and meets the required eligibility criteria described in the fact sheet.
Some other helpful links for the healthcare industry are:
- The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has a current emergencies page that gives guidance on the various legislation and initiatives that are happening as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
- Several insurance companies have waived co-pays as well as other out-of-pocket cost for COVID-19 related issues. America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) has published an article outlining how various insurance companies have acted.
- The American Hospital Association (AHA) has created a COVID-19 updates and resource page.
If you have questions about how medical providers can receive relief and support in the COVID-19 crisis, please reach out to your Warren Averett advisor or ask a member of our team to reach out to you.