New York extends 1st deadline, expands eligibility for healthcare worker bonuses

The New York Department of Health updated its guidance Aug. 29 for the state's healthcare worker bonus program, including a deadline extension.

On Aug. 3, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced that the state would provide bonuses of up to $3,000 to healthcare and mental hygiene workers. Healthcare and mental hygiene workers are eligible for the bonus if they are employed by a qualified employer for a consecutive sixth-month period. They also must have an eligible title and not exceed an annual base salary (excluding any bonuses or overtime pay) of $125,000, among other requirements.

The bonuses will be based on vesting periods, or hours worked over a consecutive six-month period between Oct. 1, 2021, through March 31, 2024, according to a news release from the governor's office. Up to $3,000 is available per worker over two vesting periods.

Previously, providers were told to complete claims for qualified employees for the first vesting period by Sept. 2, according to the New York Department of Health. The state is now allowing providers to submit for the first vesting period during the second vesting period submission period, which runs from Oct. 1 to Oct. 31.

Additionally, the New York Department of Health is now including contract and temporary staff in the bonus program. Officials said contract staff in eligible titles may receive the bonus if they meet all other requirements.

A spokesperson for the New York Department of Health told Becker's these updates reflect previous communications where state officials said it will update frequently asked questions weekly to clarify and respond to questions from employers related to the bonus program.

To learn more about the program, click here.

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