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HHS extends Provider Relief Fund deadline

Dentists now have until Sept. 13 to submit applications to receive funding

August 26, 2020

By Jennifer Garvin

CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Image from HHS
Washington — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is extending the deadline to Sept. 13 for all dentists to apply for funding through the Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal.

This is the third time HHS has extended the deadline. The Provider Relief Fund was established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act — known as the CARES Act — and allows dental providers to apply for payments made for health care-related expenses or lost revenue attributable to the pandemic.

For more information about the Provider Relief Fund, the ADA has created an FAQ which is frequently updated with the most popular Provider Relief Fund questions the Association has received from dentists.

HHS has also said that although they initially sought to provide additional details on reporting requirements by Aug. 17, the department is continuing to refine those elements and will provide additional details at a later date. Providers will still be given the detailed reporting instructions and a data collection template with the necessary data elements they will be asked to submit well in advance of the reporting system currently being made available — which is currently targeted for Oct. 1. Providers are advised to check the HHS website for the latest updates.

The following dental providers are eligible to apply:

• Dentists who have directly billed their state Medicaid/Children’s Health Insurance Programs or Medicaid managed care plans for health care-related services between Jan. 1, 2018, to Dec. 31, 2019.
• Providers who own an included subsidiary that has either directly billed their state Medicaid/CHIP programs or Medicaid managed care plans for health care-related services between Jan. 1, 2018, to Dec. 31, 2019.
• Providers who have either directly billed health insurance companies for oral health care-related services, or who own an included subsidiary that has directly billed health insurance companies for oral health care-related services.
• Licensed providers who do not accept insurance and have either directly billed patients for oral health care-related services, or who own (on the application date) an included subsidiary that does not accept insurance and has directly billed patients for oral health care-related services.
• Dentists who previously received small automatic payments from the General (Medicare) Distribution due to Medicare billings. (Beginning Aug. 10 these dentists were eligible to apply and receive additional funding from the Provider Relief Fund.)

Eligible providers must also meet all of the following requirements:

• Have filed a federal income tax return for fiscal years 2017, 2018 or 2019 or be an entity exempt from the requirement to file a federal income tax return and have no beneficial owner that is required to file a federal income tax return (for example, a state-owned hospital or health care clinic).
• Have provided patient dental care after Jan. 31.
• Not have permanently ceased providing patient dental care directly or indirectly through included subsidiaries. However, dental offices that shut down during the pandemic are eligible.
• If the applicant is an individual, has gross receipts or sales from providing patient dental care reported on Form 1040, Schedule C, Line 1, excluding income reported on a W-2 as a statutory employee.

HHS has said it is basing relief payments on 2% of gross revenues for patient care to all eligible providers. The first step in the application process is for dentists to have their Taxpayer Identification Numbers validated. HHS has also recently simplified the application form. Dentists who have their Taxpayer Identification Number validated after Sept. 13 will still be permitted to complete the full application.

The phone number for the HHS Provider Support Line is 866-569-3522 and the hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. CT, Monday – Friday.

There are also a number of HHS resources online, including HHS instructions for filling out the revised application and the Provider Relief General Information and General Distribution FAQs.

For more information about the ADA's advocacy efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic, visit ADA.org/COVID19Advocacy.