Special to TAPintoSPF. This story was written and produced by NJ Spotlight. It is being republished under a special NJ News Commons content-sharing agreement related to COVID-19 coverage. To read more, visit njspotlight.com.

Operators of 15 hospitals, hospital systems each get more than $10 million in COVID-19 relief

More than 6,000 health care providers in New Jersey so far are sharing some $723 million in federal stimulus funds to help make up for costs incurred or losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with more money expected.

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About 10% of all the money coming into the state went to Hackensack Meridian Health, which got $76.8 million. Hackensack’s payment was the seventh largest in the country to a single provider. Three other New Jersey hospitals getting more than $10 million are, like Hackensack University Medical Center, located in Bergen County, where New Jersey’s viral outbreak began in early March.

In all, the operators of 15 hospitals or hospital systems in the state each received more than $10 million — close to 40% of the money. There were also some very small payments — seven got less than $10 apiece.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) posted on its website the names and amounts of all those who have received payments through May 4, with the potential for more money coming in.

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act signed into law over the last six weeks provide $175 billion to hospitals and health care providers. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is distributing $50 billion in general funds to eligible care providers through the Health Resources and Services Administration.

COVID-19 expenses, stopping elective procedures

Money is being given to eligible health care providers based on a formula that considers 2019 Medicare fee-for-service reimbursements and 2018 net patient revenue. The funding is meant to address not only additional expenses incurred in caring for COVID-19 patients, but also the general economic harm across the entire health care system due to stopping of elective procedures. Providers began getting money last month, and additional payments will be made weekly as facilities and individuals, like doctors or therapists, sign eligibility and conditions agreements.

Targeted funds are also set aside for those in hard-hit areas, which presumably should include some parts of north Jersey, and for treating the uninsured.

To view this article in its original format with pictures and graphs, visit www.njspotlight.com/2020/05/where-the-federal-stimulus-funding-for-nj-health-care-providers-is-going.