On Oct. 8 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced amended terms for payments issued under the Accelerated and Advance Payment (AAP) Program, allowing providers and suppliers one additional year to start loan payments.

The amended terms were required by recent action by President Trump and Congress. Under the “Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act,” repayment will now begin one year from the issuance date of each provider and supplier’s accelerated or advance payment from a $106 billion fund to help alleviate financial burdens of health care providers during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This action allows providers, who took loans following the APP Program expansion on March 28, 2020, to delay loan repayment, originally due starting August 2020, until one year after the payment was issued. Once that year is completed, Medicare will automatically recoup 25% of Medicare payments owed by the provider or supplier for 11 months, with an increase to 50% for the following 6 months. If repayment is not possible during these 29 months, CMS will issue letters requiring repayment for any outstanding balance at a 4% interest rate.

Providers and suppliers are also encouraged to contact their Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) for more information on how to request an Extended Repayment Schedule (ERS). In times of extreme hardship, the ERS allows providers or suppliers to pay their debts over a course of 3-5 years. The $175 billion in Provider Relief funds can be used toward repayment of these Medicare loans.

For more information, please refer to this CMS Fact Sheet: Repayment Terms and these CMS FAQs: Accelerated and Advance Payment Repayment & Recovery.

You can identify your MAC on the Medicare Policies page of the AASM website.