According to Maryland’s Congressional Delegation, the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through its Provider Relief Fund (PRF), will be releasing $191,711,521 in payments to 1,723 health care providers in Maryland who experienced revenue losses and expenses incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The congressmen, including U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen David Trone, Steny H. Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume, Andy Harris, M.D., Anthony G. Brown, and Jamie B. Raskin, relayed the need for additional funding in a press release:
“The pandemic has significantly strained and tested our health care providers,” the lawmakers said. “We must continue to support our frontline providers as they respond to the sustained demand for their services in our communities, especially those worst hit by COVID-19. This federal relief will help ensure communities have access to the care and resources they need.”
HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra acknowledged how these funds might be used to address inequities in health care access in a press release:
“As we continue to fight the pandemic, the Biden-Harris Administration remains committed to supporting our health care providers on the front lines,” said HHS Secretary Becerra. “This vital funding will ensure critical health care services are delivered to communities across the country – including to those who are disproportionately impacted by the pandemic and medically-underserved. We will continue to make health care accessible for everyone who needs it and reach people where they are.”
PRF payments are a part of the “$25.5 billion the Biden-Harris Administration is releasing to health care providers to recruit and retain staff, purchase masks and other supplies, modernize facilities, or other activities needed to respond to COVID-19.” The current phase of PRF will go to providers who experiences losses from July 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021. Additional funds will be routed to smaller providers who have been especially susceptible to losses during the pandemic. Moreover, “bonus” payments will be offered to providers based on the amount and type of services provided to Medicare, Medicaid, or CHIP patients.
Among the providers receiving funds are the University of Maryland and MedStar health systems, as well as Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties. Recipients of Provider Relief Funds can be found here.
Read the full Congressional press release.
Read the full HHS press release.