On June 10, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration, announced $4 billion in additional relief payments to hospitals impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Approximately $3 billion will be allocated to hospitals serving vulnerable populations and operating on thin margins, while $1 billion will go toward specialty rural hospitals, urban hospitals with certain rural Medicare designations and hospitals in small metropolitan areas.
After announcing the distribution of an additional $10 billion in Provider Relief Fund payments to safety net hospitals on June 9, HHS learned that some acute care hospitals did not qualify for these payments. As a result, HHS is now expanding the criteria so that certain acute care hospitals meeting the revised profitability threshold (less than three percent averaged consecutively over two or more of the last five cost reporting periods) may now qualify. HHS expects to distribute approximately $3 billion across 215 acute care hospitals. Read more in the state-by-state breakdown.
In May, HHS announced $10 billion in funding to almost 4,000 rural healthcare providers. HHS is now expanding the criteria to qualify for these payments to include certain special rural Medicare designation hospitals in urban areas, as well as others who provide care in smaller non-rural communities, which may include suburban hospitals that are not considered rural but serve rural populations and operate with smaller profit margins. HHS estimates the funding will provide relief of over $1 billion to 500 of these hospitals. Check out the state-by-state breakdown for more details.
Additional information can be found in the press release.