CMS Suspends Accelerated and Advanced Payment Programs

Regulation | April 27, 2020 | by

With the $175 billion allocated to the Provider Relief Fund from the CARES Act and the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, CMS announced that they are reevaluating the amounts for the Accelerated Payment Program and suspending the Advanced Payment Program.

The Accelerated and Advance Payment Programs are temporary loans to help providers with cash flow issues in an emergency. They require repayment which is different than the funds being distributed through the Provider Relief Fund being administered by the Department of Health and Human Services. LeadingAge has heard from many members receiving funding through the Provider Relief Fund distributions but few who are participating in the Accelerated and Advanced Payment Programs.

As of April 26, CMS will not be accepting any new applications for the Advance Payment Program and will be reevaluating all pending and new applications for Accelerated Payments. To date, $100 billion have been distributed through these temporary loan programs. The repayment of these funds for non-hospital providers begins 120 days after the date of issuance of the payment. Typical LeadingAge members have 210 days from the date of the accelerated or advance payment was made to repay the balance. If a balance remains after 210 days, interest will be assessed. CMS has updated their fact sheet on the programs to reflect the recent change.

There has been bipartisan interest from Congressional offices to lower or waive the interest rates charged for repayment. LeadingAge supports the reduction of the burden on providers to repay these loan funds whether through decreased or waived interest rates as well as extended the repayment period to match the longer period granted to hospitals.