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State & Federal  Policy Updates

Federal News
State Policy Updates
Federal Policy Updates
  • Background Information on COVID Uninsured Claims

  • COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide

  • First payments from $100 Billion provider fund in CARES to be distributed starting today; second round could be noticeably more beneficial for health centers
    Read the Statement


  • CHC CARES ACT Funding and Guidance is here.

  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has been working to provide relief to providers through a variety of mechanisms. 

    • On March 28, 2020, it released an accelerated payment plan for Medicare providers, providing financial relief for those on the front lines of COVID-19, including FQHCs. 

    • On March 30, 2020, CMS issued an Interim Final Rule that would provide additional flexibilities for Medicare providers to fight COVID-19. This interim final rule would allow FQHCs to provide e-visits, which are communications with patients through an online portal, ease restrictions on comprehensive visiting nurse services, and ease some requirements on chronic care management services.  

      With the passage of the CARES Act two weeks ago, we expect CMS will soon release more information on how health centers can begin billing as distant site providers. NACHC is in communication with CMS on the importance of these services to health centers.  


  • COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Response and 42 CFR Part 2 Guidance

  • HRSA Emergency Preparedness and Recovery Resources for Health Centers

  • NACHC:

  • Health centers do not need to request HRSA prior approval via a change in scope in cases where they are temporarily closing a site due to the public health emergency. Health centers should ensure their patients are made aware of closures and where and how to seek care at other service delivery sites as appropriate.

    If a health center determines that it will permanently close a site after the public health emergency, it must submit a change in scope for HRSA approval to delete the site.

    In certain circumstances, health centers are permitted to request a change in scope of project to temporarily add a location in response to emergency events. See PAL 2014-05: Updated Process for Requesting a Change in Scope to Add Temporary Sites in Response to Emergency Events for additional information about the requirements and process for requesting such a change in scope.

    Can my health center reduce the delivery of some required or additional services (e.g., dental services, physical therapy) during a public health emergency? 

    HRSA recognizes that during declared emergencies health centers may face staffing shortages and/or facility capacity limitations and may need to prioritize appointments and staffing to address the most urgent needs of patients. No change in scope is necessary if your health center is changing the level or intensity of certain services within the scope of project. If a health center permanently removes a service from its scope of project, a change in scope request to delete the service will need to be submitted for HRSA approval.


  • HHS Awards $100 Million to Health Centers for COVID-19 Response

  • Health Center Project Directors: Look for Information Collection Emails
    In the bulletin Health Center COVID-19 Information Collection, HHS announced their request that health centers report on COVID-19-related activities.

    • The COVID-19 Survey emails to H80 grantees will come from

    • These emails go to the Project Director registered in HRSA’s Electronic Handbooks (EHBs).

    • The subject line of the emails is, “ACTION REQUIRED by [deadline]: Health Center COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Tracking Survey.”

    • These emails will come on Mondays and Thursdays; the second email came out yesterday.

      Project Directors, please check your spam or junk folders and add the email to your safe sender list.

      You will also receive a separate email with the survey questions for you to review in preparation for completing the information collection request. If you do not receive these emails, please reach out to Health Center Program Support online or at 877-464-4772 (option 2). 

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