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Your Documentation for Reimbursement Programs Received During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Featured article

The CARES Act was designed to provide fast and direct economic assistance to small businesses, including medial practices.   This program has helped several practices remain viable during the COVID-19 pandemic as patient appointments and regular care transitioned to a more virtual environment.  And some practices did not avail themselves of the programs because of the required extra work for documentation, but there is help to make the process a little more streamlined.

The Accelerated and Advance Payment (AAP) Programs through CMS are typically used to give providers emergency funding and address cash flow issues for providers and suppliers when there is disruption in claims submission or claims processing, including during a public health emergency.1  Practices who applied received a payment or loan based on previous Medicare billing (and other eligibility requirements2).  Repayment of the loan starts 121 days after receipt of the money and is interest-free until the 210th day after receipt.  At that date, the loan starts to accrue interest at 10.25%.  

The documentation requirement can be confusing. Practices want to ensure they have reconciled the funds properly in a system of debits and credits.  A recent webinar from the Business Optimization team will provide specifics on creating a credit and debit system so your practice understands where they are in the process of recoupment from CMS.

“The key to understanding where the money goes is thorough documentation,” noted Kristy McGowan, Business Optimization team member. McGowan also recommends reaching out to practice management vendors to see if they have created dashboards for the AAP programs within their system.

In addition, the CARES Act created the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) - providing small businesses with the resources they need to maintain their payroll, hire back employees who may have been laid off, and cover applicable overhead.3 The PPP requires that businesses use at least 75% of the monies in payroll and benefits costs in order to have the loan fully forgiven. Practices must also keep accurate documentation to ensure they do not have to repay this loan. 

As of mid-May, “monies may still be available to practices under this program,” according to John Dodd, Business Optimization team member.  He noted that there was over $1 billion still available.

The Business Optimization team is available to help practices create the allocation systems or answer any questions to help navigate through the available programs.  To reach Kristy or John, please email: