CMS sets up accelerated and advanced Medicare payments due to coronavirus

March 28, 2020

Modern Healthcare

The CMS Saturday detailed how providers can access accelerated or advanced Medicare payments under the new economic stimulus package.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act—CARES—which President Donald Trump signed into law on Friday, enables all Medicare providers to tap into an emergency fund in order to shore up their cash flows.

“With our nation’s healthcare providers on the front lines in the fight against COVID-19, dollars and cents shouldn’t be adding to their worries,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said. “Unfortunately, the major disruptions to the healthcare system caused by COVID-19 are a significant financial burden on providers. Today’s action will ensure that they have the resources they need to maintain their all-important focus on patient care during the pandemic.”

Typically, the CMS only makes such a move to assist providers impacted by a natural disaster. But Saturday’s change applies to all hospitals, doctors, durable medical equipment suppliers and other Medicare Part A and Part B providers and suppliers.

According to a CMS release, providers or suppliers must:

  • Have billed Medicare for claims within 180 days immediately prior to the date of signature on the provider’s/ supplier’s request form,
  • Not be in bankruptcy,
  • Not be under active medical review or program integrity investigation, and
  • Not have any outstanding delinquent Medicare overpayments

The agency will start accepting and processing requests immediately and said payments could go out within seven days.