CARES Act Establishes a Public Health Fund for Eligible Health Care Providers
On Friday, March 27, 2020, the President signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). Among the many provisions of the CARES Act, Title VIII designates one hundred billion dollars of the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund for grants or other mechanisms to eligible health care providers to reimburse them for otherwise unreimbursed losses and expenses related to the coronavirus. This program is administered by the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
Title VIII defines eligible health care providers as public entities, Medicare or Medicaid enrolled suppliers and providers. The Secretary is also empowered to include other United States for-profit entities and not-for-profit entities that provide diagnoses, testing or care for individuals with possible or actual cases of COVID-19 as funding recipients.
The law specifies that reimbursement shall be for health care related expenses or lost revenues that are attributable to coronavirus, but only to the extent such expenses are not reimbursed or reimbursable from other sources. Reimbursable expenses can include lost revenue, the cost of construction, real estate leases, leases, medical supplies, medical training, and retrofitting to prepare for and meet the challenges of COVID-19 cases.
Payments can be made either retrospectively or prospectively as the Secretary determines. Thus, the law contemplates funding not only losses as of this date but future expenses as well.
So far, there has been no guidance on whether the funds are to be allocated among regions, practice areas or types of institutions. Similarly, although the Secretary is to consider applications and make payments on a “rolling basis,” we do not have guidance on whether consideration will be given on the basis of time of submission or some other standard.
At a minimum, an application for payment must include a statement of the provider’s need and its taxpayer identification number. The Secretary has yet to promulgate regulations, application forms, the standards for calculating losses and other required documentation. These will no doubt provide many details which are unspecified in the CARES Act as written. In the meantime, health care providers would be advised to gather data on the expenses and losses they have incurred due to the coronavirus and the expenses they wish to incur to meet the challenge of doing business during the pandemic so they can be submitted as soon as guidance is received from the Secretary.
The postings on this blog were created for general informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice or a solicitation to provide legal services. Although we attempt to ensure that the postings are complete, accurate, and current as of the time of publication, we assume no responsibility for their completeness, accuracy, or timeliness. The information in this blog is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, a lawyer-client relationship. Readers should not act upon this information without seeking professional legal counsel.
This blog may contain links to independent third party websites and services, including social media. We provide these links for your convenience, and you access them at your own risk. We have no control over and do not monitor the content or policies (including privacy policies) of these third-party websites and have no responsibility for, and no liability with respect to, their content, accuracy, or reliability. Unless expressly stated, we do not endorse any of the linked websites or any product, service, or publication referenced herein or therein. We will remove a link to any site from this blog upon request of the linked entity.
We grant permission to readers to link to this blog so long as this blog is not misrepresented. This site is not sponsored or associated with any other site unless so identified.
If you wish for Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, P.A., to consider representing you, please obtain contact information from the Contact Us area of this blog or go to the firm’s website at www.wilentz.com. One of our lawyers will be happy to discuss the possibility of representation with you. However, the authors of Wilentz blogs are licensed only in New Jersey and/or New York and do not wish to represent anyone who viewed this site in a state where the site fails to comply with all laws and ethical rules of that state.
Employer Alert: CDC Releases New Quarantine and Isolation Calculator
Employee Complaints About COVID-19 Safety Protocols are Triggering OSHA Investigations
Employment Law Update: New Jersey Executive Order to Require COVID-19 Vaccination & Booster for Workers in Certain Health Care Settings and Congregate Settings