HHS gives hospitals more time to use COVID-19 relief funds

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The Biden administration granted some hospitals and providers more time to use their COVID-19 relief funding on June 11.

Through the passing of several bills, Congress allocated about $187 billion in relief funding to hospitals and health systems to help offset pandemic-related losses. Hospitals and providers had until June 30 to use the federal aid received or return it. 

Under the extension plan, hospitals that received an aggregate of $10,000 after June 30, 2020, during one of the distribution periods will have more time to use the funding.

The deadlines to use the funding will be staggered based on the date the funds were received, according to HHS. For example, hospitals that received funds from July 1 to Dec. 31 last year will have until Dec. 31 of this year. Those that received funds between Jan. 1 and June 30 of this year will have until June 30, 2022. Providers that will receive funds between July 1 and Dec. 31 of this year will have until Dec. 31, 2022.

"These updated requirements reflect our focus on giving providers equitable amounts of time for use of these funds, maintaining effective safeguards for taxpayer dollars, and incorporating feedback from providers requesting more flexibility and clarity about PRF reporting," said Diana Espinosa, acting administrator of HHS' Health Resources and Services Administration.

The decision to extend the deadline comes after hospitals urged HHS to give them more time to use the funds and distribute the remaining relief aid because they were still fighting the pandemic and struggling financially. 

"The [American Hospital Association] thanks HHS for listening to our concerns and extending the deadline for hospitals, health systems and other health care providers to use this critical relief funding. Today's announcement to give some health care providers more time to spend emergency coronavirus funding will help to ensure that hospitals and health systems can continue the battle against COVID-19 as cases persist."

Read more here.

 

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