Wednesday, May 20, 2020

H.R. 6800, The HEROES Act Passes the House 

On Friday, May 15th, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 6800, The HEROES Act, another piece of legislation aimed at addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. This bill was passed largely along party lines with most Democrats voting for it and Republicans voting against the package. Leader McConnell has stated that he will not bring up this legislation in the Senate. The Senate is likely to craft its own bill. We will continue to work with both chambers and advocate for our priorities during this challenging time.

Of particular note to our sector, below are the provisions found in the bill: 
  • Ensures an additional $100 billion for the provider fund. 
  • Improves the Accelerated and Advance Payment Program that has been critical to keeping providers afloat including lowering interest rates for repayment.
  • Allows facilities with the most losses from this pandemic to be compensated fairly. 
  • Increases the Federal Matching Assistance Percentage (FMAP) by 14 percentage points through June 30, 2021. At a time of financial instability, this would ensure State governments have the resources they need to continue providing critical services.
  • Delays the implementation of the Medicaid Financial Accountability Rule (MFAR) until the end of the emergency period.
  • Requires Medicare’s Quality Improvement Organizations to provide infection control support to nursing homes struggling with COVID-19 outbreaks.
  • Ensures skilled nursing facilities have a means for residents to conduct “televisitation” with loved ones while in-person visits are not possible during the COVID-19 emergency. 
  • Requires public reporting of positive cases in nursing facilities. 
  • Provides $150 million to states to create strike teams if three or more residents or staff are diagnosed with COVID-19 in a 72-hour time period. 
  • Provides a 20 percent per diem increase for facilities with COVID-19 only units.
  • Provides a $13.00 increase in wages for essential workers up to $10,000. 
As the Senate begins to consider this bill, we will keep you updated as to what
the final outcome will be.

No comments:

Post a Comment