CARES Act Provider Relief Fund eligible expesnes

I’m looking for a little guidance on the eligible expenses for the CARES Act Provider Relief funds that we received.

We had the opportunity to rent out a separate space in our same building that we plan on using to see our sick (possible COVID/Flu/Strep) patients that we haven’t yet brought into our office due to the provider concerns about safety.

Does this sound like a proper expense, plus the equipment and supplies we will need for this space, to use these funds for?

Also, only one of our three providers will be seeing patients in this space as she is the only one comfortable doing that. Would hazard pay for her also be an appropriate use of these funds?

I’m very hesitant to use government funds in any way that would not be allowed!

Thank you in advance for your help!

Everything you listed is an acceptable expense for CARES PRF funds.

It’s probably easier to say what you CAN’T spend it on:

  • payroll in the same period that you used your PPP loan, if you got one (this would be double dipping). You can, however, use it for payroll outside your PPP time. If you used your PPP loan for April and May payroll, you can use PRF money for June and July, for example.
  • more broadly, any item that’s already being reimbursed to you another way (like eFMLA and emergency sick leave pay, which are covered by payroll tax credits per FFCRA)
  • paying anybody more than Executive Level II ($197,300 per year)
  • forbidden activities: gambling, porn, abortion, and capturing wild primates, to name a few

Anything else is fair game.

From the HHS FAQ: (https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/cares-act-provider-relief-fund/faqs/provider-relief-fund-general-info/index.html#terms-conditions)

The term “healthcare related expenses attributable to coronavirus” is a broad term that may cover a range of items and services purchased to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, including:

  • supplies used to provide healthcare services for possible or actual COVID-19 patients;
  • equipment used to provide healthcare services for possible or actual COVID-19 patients;
  • workforce training;
  • developing and staffing emergency operation centers;
  • reporting COVID-19 test results to federal, state, or local governments;
  • building or constructing temporary structures to expand capacity for COVID-19 patient care or to provide healthcare services to non-COVID-19 patients in a separate area from where COVID-19 patients are being treated; and
  • acquiring additional resources, including facilities, equipment, supplies, healthcare practices, staffing, and technology to expand or preserve care delivery.

Providers may have incurred eligible health care related expenses attributable to coronavirus prior to the date on which they received their payment. Providers can use their Provider Relief Fund payment for such expenses incurred on any date, so long as those expenses were attributable to coronavirus and were used to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. HHS expects that it would be highly unusual for providers to have incurred eligible expenses prior to January 1, 2020.

The term “lost revenues that are attributable to coronavirus” means any revenue that you as a healthcare provider lost due to coronavirus. This may include revenue losses associated with fewer outpatient visits, canceled elective procedures or services, or increased uncompensated care. Providers can use Provider Relief Fund payments to cover any cost that the lost revenue otherwise would have covered, so long as that cost prevents, prepares for, or responds to coronavirus. Thus, these costs do not need to be specific to providing care for possible or actual coronavirus patients, but the lost revenue that the Provider Relief Fund payment covers must have been lost due to coronavirus. HHS encourages the use of funds to cover lost revenue so that providers can respond to the coronavirus public health emergency by maintaining healthcare delivery capacity, such as using Provider Relief Fund payments to cover:

  • Employee or contractor payroll
  • Employee health insurance
  • Rent or mortgage payments
  • Equipment lease payments
  • Electronic health record licensing fees

You may use any reasonable method of estimating the revenue during March and April 2020 compared to the same period had COVID-19 not appeared. For example, if you have a budget prepared without taking into account the impact of COVID-19, the estimated lost revenue could be the difference between your budgeted revenue and actual revenue. It would also be reasonable to compare the revenues to the same period last year.

All providers receiving Provider Relief Fund payments will be required to comply with the reporting requirements described in the Terms and Conditions and specified in future directions issued by the Secretary. HHS will provide guidance in the future about the type of documentation we expect recipients to submit. Additional guidance will be posted at https://www.hhs.gov/provider-relief/index.html.