HHS Announces New Half Billion Incentive Payment Distribution to Nursing Homes
HHS announced that it is distributing the second performance-based Provider Relief Fund payments to nursing homes. The payment announced on December 7–totaling $523 million–is the second of five performance-based payments, which in aggregate are expected to amount to approximately $2 billion. Of the eligible nursing homes, 69% (or 9,248 nursing homes) met the gating infection control criteria and, of those 9,128, 68% qualified for payments based on mortality rate data. CMS released state-level data regarding distribution of the payments, but not provider-level information (provider-level data noted below is only available after the provider has attested to receipt of and accepted the terms and conditions for the funds).CMS also clarified in updated FAQs (see below) that the permissible uses for the quality incentive payments are the same as those for the Nursing Home Infection Control Distribution–that is, they may be used for a limited set of “infection control expenses,” as defined in the terms and conditions, and may not be used for lost revenues.