Please keep reading our information because it changes every day. Below is the latest information provided to the association -- please note that we will continue to send updates as soon as we receive any new information.
August 27, 2020
CMS Announces Sweeping Regulatory Changes that Affect Medicaid Providers

On August 25, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced sweeping regulatory changes that require nursing homes to test staff and offer testing to residents for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

On August 26, CMS released guidance for nursing homes and clinical laboratories to assist in enhancing their abilities to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) to nursing home residents and their front line staff.  

On today’s AHCA/FHCA Long-Term Care Industry Partner call, AHCA's Secretary Mary Mayhew stated that AHCA was reviewing the rule and would be evaluating what, if any, changes would need to be made to Florida’s rules (e.g., the Curative contract, etc.). Secretary Mayhew said that AHCA would be providing additional updates at a later time.

Further points on the call concerning the new CMS rule:

  • The Curative test kits were not to be used to comply with the new CMS rule, as the Curative test kits were funded by the state to support the state testing requirement.

  • There are three reasons to test:
  • Routine testing based on a 7-day county positivity average;
  • When staff, contractor, resident or visitor develops symptoms; and
  • When there are new cases in staff or residents.

  • The routine testing frequency is: less than 5% is monthly; 5-10% is weekly ;above 10% is twice a week. Florida counties are currently at: 5 below 5%; 40 between 5-10%; and 22 above 10%.

FSLA will be reviewing the CMS rule and memo and will provide additional updates in the near future. In the meantime, you can read the CMS Press Release, CMS Interim Final Rule, and CMS Memo.
HHS Extends Application Deadline Extended to September 13 for Medicaid Providers and Plans to Reopen Portal to Certain Medicare Providers

As part of its ongoing efforts to provide financial relief to healthcare providers impacted by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), today the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is announcing an application deadline extension for the Phase 2 general distribution to Medicaid, Medicaid managed care, Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and dental providers. HHS also plans to allow certain Medicare providers who experienced challenges in the Phase 1 Medicare General Distribution application period a second opportunity to receive funding.

CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Recap
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Provider Relief Fund, is distributing $15 billion to eligible Medicaid, Medicaid managed care, Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and dental providers that have been impacted by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Eligible providers may receive up to 2 percent of reported revenue from patient care. The application deadline has been further extended to offer providers additional opportunity to apply for funding. You must act by Friday, Aug. 28, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. ET to be considered for payment from this distribution. Read more about the extension here.

Application Instructions
The application instructions and application form are available at It is recommend that you download and review these documents to help you complete the process through the Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal. The site also includes a webcast recording, Fact Sheet, and FAQs.

Action Required
In order to apply, you must submit your Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) for validation through the Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal by Aug. 28, 2020. If you receive the results of that validation after Aug. 28, you will still be able to complete and submit your application.

Additional Information
For additional information, please call the provider support line at (866) 569-3522; for TTY, dial 711. Hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Central Time, Monday through Friday. Service staff members are available to provide real-time technical assistance, as well as service and payment support.
Mark Your Calendar for the AHCA Weekly Provider/Health & Regulatory Partner
Conference Call

Thursday, September 3, at 4:15 p.m. EST
Dial 1-866-951-1151 and enter Room Number 8484844#
*Please note there are limited lines available for this call.

As a reminder, all calls are recorded and posted to the FHCA website here.  
TGI-FSLA: Fridays with Jason Hand
Coffee and Conversations
Fridays, from 8:30-8:50 EDT
Join us every Friday morning for a virtual cup of coffee and some candid interactive conversations about the issues facing senior living in Florida. These 20-minute sessions will be an informative look behind the curtain at how policy and rules are made and how to interpret this process effectively. Sign into Zoom so we can interact with you face-to-face and don't forget to bring your comments and questions.
Register Now to Participate
Participants in these Friday conversations will be able to purchase continuing education credits. One unit (1 hr) can be awarded for every three (3) meetings attended. Attendance will be verified by the virtual meeting platform. Sign up today and join us!*
*Please note: Participating in this meeting will require you to have a Zoom account. Zoom accounts are free and can be set up quickly. Click here for more info.
Fridays, from 8:30-8:50 EDT
  • 8/28 - HB 767 Inspection surveys rule removal – what it means
  • 9/4 - HB 767 Emergency Management Plan – and FSLA Hurricane Workgroup Update
  • 9/18 - HB 607 Direct care workers (monthly report)
  • 9/25 - HB 731 Agency For Health Care Administration
  • 10/2 - SB 664 Verification of Employment Eligibility
  • 10/9 - SB 400 Elder Abuse Facility Review Teams
  • 10/16 - 2020 Tort Bills That Died: HB 6029 – Punitive Damages; HB 9 – Damages; etc.
  • 10/23 - 2020 Other Bills That Died
  • 10/30 - Looking Ahead to the 2021 Legislative Session: Tort Reform; Covid-19 Package; ALF-centric issues; and other issues of interest to ALFs
  • 11/6 - Election Wrap-up
Sign up now and join us tomorrow morning!