The US government approved the CARES Act in April 2020. Part of the initial CARES Act was to provide funds to Health and Human Services for distribution to hospitals and providers for financial relief due to the COVID19 pandemic. HHS created a Provider Relief Fund via the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Provider Relief Fund (PRF). There were four phases of the HRSA program:
Phase I – For providers that bill fee-for service Medicare (no funds received by Pediatric groups).
Phase II – For providers that bill Medicaid or Managed Medicaid, CHIP, and providers that were not eligible for Phase I funding. Generally this was 2% of Annual Revenues for a practice (most pediatric groups that accept Medicaid/Managed Medicaid insurance qualified for this phase).
Phase III – Additional funds for providers that had significant losses in revenue due to the pandemic not covered by Phase I or II distributions.
Phase IV – Additional funds for providers that had significant losses in revenue due to the pandemic not covered by Phase I, II, III and ARP Rural payments.
Most pediatric practices that accept Medicaid and Managed Medicaid insurances received a distribution of funds in 2020 based on Phase II. In general, most practices experienced enough of a revenue decline in 2020 for which these funds are appropriate to use. The PRF funds received in Phase II needed to be utilized by the practice prior to 12/31/21. Practices that received more that $10,000 from the HRSA Provider Relief Fund between 7/1/20 to 12/31/20 must report their use of funds in reporting period 2 (1/1/22 – 3/31/22). This reporting is completed via the HRSA PRF Reporting portal.
The Guidelines for Using these Funds, per HRSA Website, are:
“To be considered an allowable expense under the Provider Relief Fund, the expense must be used to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. Provider Relief Fund payments may also be used for lost revenues attributable to the coronavirus. Reporting Entities are required to maintain adequate documentation to substantiate that these funds were used for health care-related expenses or lost revenues attributable to coronavirus, and that those expenses or losses were not reimbursed from other sources and other sources were not obligated to reimburse them. Reporting Entities are not required to submit that documentation when reporting. Providers are required to maintain supporting documentation which demonstrates that costs were incurred during the Period of Availability. The Reporting Entity is responsible for ensuring that adequate documentation is maintained.” (Updated 8/30/2021)
The window for completing the Phase II reporting is January 1 2022 to March 31, 2022. For more information on the reporting requirements please refer to the HRSA website.
Provider Relief Fund Reporting Requirements and Auditing | Official web site of the U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration (hrsa.gov)
There is a 80+ page user guide on the website for the Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Reporting Portal. This guide provides explanations/clarifications of the information requested for this report. The guide has a recommended list of information to have available prior to starting the reporting process on the website. If a user does not have all this information and started the process, they can save the work they completed and return to the HRSA PRF Portal to complete the reporting. The user guide is available on the HRSA PRF website: