Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar headshot

The federal government is no longer limiting providers’ use of Provider Relief Funds for covering lost revenue due to the coronavirus, according to an updated memo issued late last week. 

The Department of Health and Human Services announced that it will go back to allowing providers to calculate their lost revenue based on the difference between their 2019 and 2020 actual patient care revenue, and eliminate limits on how much PRF payments can be applied to that lost revenue.

HHS noted that previous reporting instructions, which were released in September, were meant to prevent providers from being more profitable in 2020 than in 2019.

“This decision to prohibit most providers from using PRF payments to become more profitable than they were pre-pandemic, in order to conserve resources to allocate to providers who were less profitable, has generated significant attention and opposition from many stakeholders and members of Congress,” the department wrote in the October memo.  

“There is consensus among stakeholders and members of Congress who have reached out to HHS that the PRF should allow a provider to apply PRF payments against all lost revenues without limitation,” it explained. 

HHS added that the amended reporting instructions should allow providers to fully apply PRF distributions to lost revenues. 

This article originally appeared on McKnight's Senior Living