COVID-19 UPDATE #55
July 15, 2020
CMS ANNOUNCES PLANS TO DELIVER TEST KITS AND TEST INSTRUMENTS TO ALL NURSING HOMES
Yesterday afternoon, CMS announced an initiative to supply nursing homes with rapid point-of-care diagnostic COVID-19 test instruments and test kits. The roll out of this initiative will begin next week with the distribution of 2000 test instruments and kits to skilled nursing facilities in geographic hotspots. Further information about the plan to deliver test instruments and kits to nursing homes can be found here and here .

TODAY at 2:30 PM PST, CMS Administrator has scheduled a call for nursing homes to make additional announcements regarding this effort. A link to call in information and the audio webcast can be found here .
ASSISTED LIVING COVID-19 EMERGENCY ADD-ON EXTENDED - DETAILS YET TO BE RELEASED
The Office of Financial Management (OFM) has authorized the distribution of funding from the federal CARES Act dollars to certain Medicaid funded long term services and supports providers, including assisted living contracted providers, who received a $9 per day add-on from March 1-June 30, 2020. We have heard the add-on will be reduced by half but have yet to receive confirmation.

Click here for the bulletin released on Friday. These funds are intended to help long term care providers offset the increased cost of providing care due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Home and Community Services has yet to announce the amount or the timeline for receiving the extended add-on payment. WHCA has requested that information.

According to DSHS, it may take several weeks for these additional funds to be available for providers to claim as new service codes have to be implemented into the payment system. However, in most instances, providers will be able to submit claims retroactively back to July 1, 2020. We will keep you apprised as we learn more. If you have questions, please email Lauri St. Ours.
REMINDER: APPLICATION DEADLINE FOR MEDICAID COVID PROVIDER RELIEF FUND IS JULY 20
As you know from previous AHCA/NCAL communications, on June 9, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the distribution of approximately $15 billion from the Provider Relief Fund to eligible providers that participate in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and have not received a payment from the Provider Relief Fund General Distribution. The payment to each provider will be approximately 2 percent of reported gross revenue from patient care. Applications for this funding must be submitted by Monday, July 20.

Medicaid and CHIP Provider Distribution Instructions and the Medicaid and CHIP Provider Distribution Application Form are available here . It is recommended to download and review these documents to help you complete the process through the Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal . In addition, AHCA/NCAL has drafted a tips sheet and step-by-step guide for providers on how to successfully navigate this Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal for non-SNF Medicaid Providers.

If you run into any issue when applying for funding, please call the HHS Provider Support Line at (866) 569-3522; for TTY, dial 711. Hours of operation are 7 AM to 10 PM Central Time, Monday through Friday. Service staff members are available to provide real-time technical assistance, as well as service and payment support.
CMS TO HOST WEBINAR ON ESTABLISHING AN INFECTION PREVENTION PROGRAM WITH EMPHASIS ON COVID-19
On Thursday, July 16, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will host a webinar titled Establishing an Infection Prevention Program in a Nursing Home, With an Emphasis on COVID-19. The webinar will begin at 1:00 PM PST. The webinar is open to nursing home leaders, clinical and administrative staff members, and others interested in nursing home infection prevention in the era of COVID-19. You must register in advance , and you will receive an individual link to join the webinar via email after you register.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES
WHCA continues to post resources and information as it becomes available on our website . If you have questions or need additional information, please call the WHCA office at (800) 562-6170.