May 28, 2020
HHS Announces $4.9B Skilled Nursing Fund

With Memorial Day weekend comes a huge announcement from HHS

Skilled nursing operators to receive massive $5B relief fund

 
Over the past 9 weeks, skilled nursing facilities have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 battle. Many operators are running on empty, facing significant revenue losses and undertaking exorbitant expenses in order to care for our nation’s most vulnerable.
 
As Americans kick off the summer season, SNF administrators can finally breathe a much-needed sigh of relief. The Department of Health and Human Services just pledged $4.9 billion in support for nursing homes who are in dire need of additional staff, personal protective equipment, testing supplies and other coronavirus essentials.
 
“This funding secured by President Trump will help nursing homes keep the seniors they care for safe during the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Alex Azar, HHS Secretary. “The Trump Administration is providing every resource we can, from funding and direct PPE shipments to regulatory flexibility and infection control consultations, to protect seniors in nursing homes and those who care for them.”

The distribution details

So, how will nursing homes collect their piece of the $4.9B pie? According to HHS, the federal government will
provide funds on both a fixed basis and a variable basis. Skilled nursing facilities will receive a $50,000 relief check, plus an additional $2,500 per bed. To be eligible for the distribution, facilities must have at least 6 certified beds.
 
“Nursing home recipients must attest that they will only use the Provider Relief Fund payments for permissible purposes, as set forth in the Terms and Conditions, and agree to comply with future government audit and reporting requirements,” reads the press release.
 
SNF advocates like the AHCA were happy to hear news of the funding, although there is a $10B disparity between the final amount and the total they lobbied for. Next, they will continue to advocate for the needs of all long-term care providers. In particular, assisted living facilities have been hit hard by the pandemic and have yet to receive federal aid.
 
SpecialtyRx urges our partners to visit the HHS website for the latest announcements on CARES funding, eligibility and other breaking COVID-19 relief information.