HHS makes changes to Provider Relief Fund reporting

The changes include expanding reporting and spending deadlines.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has revised reporting requirements for practices which have received Provider Relief Fund (PRF) payments.

According to a news release, the revisions includes expanding the time allowed to report information and extending deadlines on expending PRF funds for those recipients who received payments after June 30, 2020.

"From the beginning of this pandemic, health care providers have gone above and beyond to care for their patients in extremely difficult circumstances that caused significant financial hardship,” Health Resources and Services Administration Acting Administrator Diana Espinosa says in the release. “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.”

Some of the key updates include:

  1. The period of availability of funds is based on the date the payment is received (rather than requiring all payments be used by June 30, 2021, regardless of when they were received).
  2. Recipients are required to report for each Payment Received Period in which they received one or more payments exceeding, in the aggregate, $10,000 (rather than $10,000 cumulatively across all PRF payments).
  3. Recipients will have a 90-day period to complete reporting (rather than a 30-day reporting period).
  • The reporting requirements are now applicable to recipients of the Skilled Nursing Facility and Nursing Home Infection Control Distribution in addition to General and other Targeted Distributions.
  • The PRF Reporting Portal will open for providers to start submitting information on July 1, 2021.

The full revised requirements can be found here.

Anders Gilberg, senior vice president of government affairs for the Medical Group Management Group, applauded the move in an emailed statement.

“MGMA is encouraged by the willingness of the HHS to provide additional flexibility and clarity for medical groups that received PRF assistance during the COVID-19 public health emergency,” Gilberg says in the statement. “Specifically, we appreciate HHS acknowledging our concerns regarding the timeline to spend and report funds disbursed as part of this critical program. By increasing the timeframe to report from 30 to 90 days and implementing a staggered deadline to use the PRF payments, medical groups won't have to rush to meet prior arbitrary deadlines.”