On April 7, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma announced during a White House briefing that the United States Department of Health and Human Services would be distributing $30 billion to health care providers this week through grants. The funding comes from the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund established by the CARES Act.
According to Administrator Verma, the grant amounts would be based on “Medicare revenue.” She noted that these distributions would have “no strings attached” and said that “health care providers can spend that any way they see fit.” She promised that these funds would be distributed this week based on the fact that many providers use direct deposit for their Medicare payments. For those providers that do not use direct deposit, Verma stated that they would be required to go through a “very simple registration.” Unlike other programs under the CARES Act, the funds will not be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.
During the briefing, Verma also acknowledged the providers who get the majority of their revenue from other sources (including Medicaid) and indicated there would be a second pool of grants to address providers such as pediatricians, children’s hospitals, and nursing homes. No timing was provided on when the second pool would be available.
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