Society Letters

AMA Sign-On Letter on the Fourth Stimulus Package

April 15, 2020

To: The Honorable Nancy Pelosi, The Honorable Mitch McConnell, The Honorable Charles Schumer, The Honorable Kevin McCarthy

"We greatly appreciate that the CARES Act expanded the Accelerated and Advance Payment Program for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency. We appreciate that the statute postpones the start of recoupment from day one to day 120 after initial payment and allows up to 365 days for repayment. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has worked quickly to provide flexibility to physicians who need financial assistance. However, we have heard significant concerns about the ability of physician practices to repay this amount of money while patients remain at home and physicians delay non-essential procedures and visits to preserve protective equipment and slow the spread of the virus, and there are statutory fixes needed to help physician practices. We provide more detail below about our recommendations to:
• postpone recoupment until 365 days after the advance payment is issued;
• reduce the per-claim recoupment amount from 100% to 25%;
• extend the repayment period for physicians to at least two years;
• waive the interest that accrues during the extended payment period; and
• give the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) authority to issue more than one advance payment."

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