HRSA continues to evaluate Phase 4 applications while sending more PRF funding

HRSA continues to evaluate Phase 4 applications while sending more PRF funding #HRSA #continues #evaluate #Phase #applications #sending #PRF #funding Welcome to Americanah Blog, here is the new story we have for you today:

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Phase 4 PRF funds of $60 million were distributed by the Health Resources and Services Administration to 293 providers, leaving around $1.6 billion unallocated.

For some recipients of the Provider Relief Fund, HRSA, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services, added a fifth reporting period so they could explain how they used the funds. The fourth reporting period starts on January 1 of 2023, while the fifth begins on July 1 of that same year. The federal government distributed its tenth batch of money on September 9 since the program’s launch in 2020.

The agency noted that 1% of Phase 4 candidates still need to be evaluated.

Given that it has been almost a year since applications were submitted, it is remarkable that HRSA is still considering them. According to Nicole Fallon, LeadingAge’s vice president of integrated services and health policy, in an email to McKnight’s Long-Term Care News.

Fallon said that several of the other pending applications are from bigger or multi-site groups, and as a result, their funding requests are probably far broader in scope. Because applicants must choose the care setting and provider type that accounts for the largest percentage of their revenue, she said that it is challenging to maintain data on the number of SNFs that filed for these monies.

She gave an example of a challenging case that takes HRSA longer to review: “One of our members who just received their Phase 4 payment in July or August had a fire in their nursing home smack in the heart of the epidemic.” “The good news is that nobody was hurt and that everyone was swiftly evacuated. HRSA, however, required longer to process their application due to the exceptional circumstances for establishing losses and expenses.

Fallon said, “So sometimes that might be assisted living or independent living instead than an 80-bed SNF.” “If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say that the majority of nursing facilities who still incurred losses and/or coronavirus costs filed for Phase 4 funding.

Only a small number of people have reported receiving adequate PRF and other COVID-19 support to cover all of their coronavirus losses and costs. Rarely does PRF completely plug the financial gap caused by the pandemic.

Without such assistance, Fallon claimed that many SNFs would not have weathered the immense financial strain brought by by the pandemic. Personal safety equipment, COVID testing, maintaining and employing workers, and vaccines are examples of additional expenses. There may have also been a requirement for things like HVAC system upgrades or the establishment of isolation units during outbreaks. Fallon said that while nursing facilities did get targeted PRF payouts and targeted Nursing Home Infection Control monies, some of the financial help had tight criteria. Affected occupancy thus significantly reduced income.

She said that the NHIC money, for instance, could only be used to cover infection control costs, which included PPE, testing, manpower, technology to allow communication with families, and other infection control costs.

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