Days Until Medicare Payments Stop

As we approach August 1st, many hospitals and health care providers across the country will no longer receive Medicare Fee-For-Service payments. Despite being in the midst of a global pandemic, Congress has not adjusted the terms of repayment for the Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payment Programs and now providers – and the patients they serve – are at risk.

The clock is TICKING!

When time runs out - hospitals will lose an average of approximately 25 percent of their payments – a devastating blow that will affect their ability to keep their doors open and continue caring for patients. During an unprecedented health and financial crisis, now is not the time for Congress to abandon frontline heroes.

A full list of hospitals and providers participating in the programs as of May 2nd is available to download from CMS here.

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Fixing Medicare Accelerated & Advance Payment Programs Critical to Patient Care

“This lifeline could become an anchor that sinks the recovery of hospitals across the country.” Chip Kahn, FAH President and CEO

Despite the fact we are still very much in the COVID fight, starting on or about August 1st, hospitals around the country will lose Medicare fee-for-service payments. These payments will be zeroed out until the borrowed funds are repaid. The repayment schedule does not account for the continued strain on our nation’s hospitals, including that many patients are reluctant to come back for care, COVID remains a scourge in increasing parts of the nation, and hospitals must prepare for an anticipated second COVID surge.

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FAH/FTI Consulting Issue Brief

Hospital Finances on Precarious Footing as Medicare Loan Repayment Deadline Looms

The Federation of American Hospitals, in conjunction with FTI Consulting, today released an issue brief on the Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payment Programs (MAAPP) and the precarious financial position of hospitals as repayment deadlines loom. Research shows that patients remain hesitant to seek medical care and hospitals continue to lose revenues that may never be recovered, trends that could result in a doomsday scenario if action is not taken. Hospitals across the country, particularly in rural areas, remain at risk for closure due to the financial impacts of COVID-19 even as states begin to re-open. This brief is a part of a larger effort by the Federation of American Hospitals to educate policymakers on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on access to hospital care in the United States.

Podcast

Listen: Expert Discussion on COVID Impact on Patient Care

New Reality: Keeping Hospitals in Communities after COVID-19 with Professor J.B. Silvers

Health finance expert J.B. Silvers joined FAH President and CEO, Chip Kahn, to discuss his nationally published op-ed in which he compared the situation hospitals and health systems are facing due to COVID-19 to that of banks during the 2008 financial crisis. J.B., who is a professor of banking and finance at the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, says the health care system may look much different after pandemic, and he offers a look at what the new normal might be.

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Ask Congress/CMS Checklist

  • Extend the start of repayment of the loans from 120 days to at least 12 months

  • Reduce the amount of repayment taken from each Medicare claim during repayment from 100 percent to 25 percent

  • Extend the repayment period from 12 months for hospitals (or 210 days for other providers) to a minimum of 36 months before providers must pay the outstanding balance and before interest begins to accrue

  • Waive the interest rate or at least limit it to no more than 1 percent

  • Resume the Program, which was paused on April 27th

  • Increase the amount that can be advanced to hospitals from three or six months of Medicare payments to 12 months of Medicare payments

  • Allocate the funds from general Treasury revenues rather than from the Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust Fund

  • Authorize loan forgiveness in cases of extreme hardship