- HHS said Friday it will deliver an additional $10 billion in federal relief dollars to hospitals in new coronavirus hot spots areas as COVID-19 cases continue to surge in the South and overwhelm some hospitals.
- The money is set to go out next as early as Monday following HHS' call for additional data to determine which hospitals are eligible based on a formula that takes into account COVID-19 admissions through June 10. Illinois hospitals are set to receive the most money, nearly $740 million, according to HHS figures.
- The American Hospital Association thanked HHS for the additional funding round but warned more is needed as it doesn't take into account areas in the country experiencing the current surge.
The U.S. has failed to contain the novel coronavirus, with new surges in cases causing hospitals to put off elective procedures and warning of new hospital bed shortages, particularly in the South and West including Texas, Florida and Arizona.
Cases in the U.S. topped 3.6 million as of Friday, more than any other country in the world, according to Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. The U.S. has also reported more deaths than any other country as more than 138,000 have died.
HHS said its second round of hot spot funding will reimburse providers who cared for a disproportionately high number of patients with the disease through June 10.
This latest funding round is intended to aid more than 1,000 hospitals in nearly ever state across the country.
Though appreciative, AHA warned it is not enough. "We look forward to working with the Administration to ensure that additional relief will be distributed to 'hot spots' and all hospitals," the group said in a statement Friday.
Overall, hot spot funding committed to hospitals now totals more than $20 billion, representing 12% of the overall $175 billion of the total provider relief funds made available through two pieces of legislation, including the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.
Of that $175 billion, $125 billion has been allocated but just $61 billion has been delivered and attested to by the providers that have received it.
Just last week, HHS made another announcement that it would make available $4 billion, targeting safety-net providers and special rural providers.
Still, hospitals continue to lobby for more aid as recent polling shows widespread support for the nation's hospitals.