An Expert Discussion on the Provider Relief Fund

August 3, 2020

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Health care providers are facing prolonged financial pressure as COVID-19 continues to spread across the U.S. Congress and the administration have pursued several actions to deliver aid to hospitals, health systems, and outpatient health care practices. The largest source of federal aid is the Provider Relief Fund. Through several COVID-19 relief packages, Congress has allocated $175 billion to this fund to support a range of health care entities treating patients with COVID-19 and attenuate revenue losses brought on by a drastic decline in the utilization of other health services. The Department of Health and Human Services has released the Provider Relief Fund in several waves, but some providers most in need have faced barriers to access these funds and many continue to grapple with immense revenue losses. During this webinar, panelists addressed the following key questions:

  • How has the relief fund been distributed to date among different health care entities?
  • How have hospitals and ambulatory care providers been financially impacted by the pandemic and what are the implications for access to health services?
  • What factors should policymakers consider as they weigh additional options to support providers?


  • Suzie Desai, MBA, Senior Director, Not-For-Profit Health Care, U.S. Public Finance Ratings, S&P Global
  • Kenneth Kaufman, MBA, Managing Director and Chair, Kaufman Hall
  • Mark Miller, Ph.D., Executive Vice President of Health Care, Arnold Ventures
  • Karyn Schwartz, Senior Fellow, Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF)
  • Billy Wynne, J.D., Chairman, Wynne Health Group

This event was made possible by Arnold Ventures.

Presentation: Schwartz Presentation

Presentation: Desais Presentation

Event Resources

Key Resources

“Limitations of the Program for Uninsured COVID-19 Patients Raise Concerns.” Schwartz, K., and Tolbert, J. Kaiser Family Foundation. July 17, 2020. Available at

“The Effect of COVID-19 on Hospital Financial Health.” Kaufman Hall. July 2020. Available at

“Options to Support Medicaid Providers in Response to COVID-19.” Musumeci, M., Rudowitz, R., Hinton, E., et. al. June 17, 2020. Available at

“A Bumpy Recovery Is Ahead for Hospitals and Other Health Providers as Non-Emergent Procedures Restart.” Peknay, D., and Desai, S. S&P Global Ratings. May 26, 2020. Available at

“Distribution of CARES Act Funding Among Hospitals.” Schwartz, K and Damico, A. Kaiser Family Foundation. May 13, 2020. Available at

“COVID-19 Webinar Series Session 16 – The Changing Landscape of Primary Care.” Alliance for Health Policy (webinar). May 20, 2020. Available at

“Update on COVID-19 Funding for Hospitals and Other Providers.” Schwartz, K., Tolbert, J., Pollitz, K., and Neuman, T. Kaiser Family Foundation. April 24, 2020. Available at

Additional Resources

“What We Know About Provider Consolidation.” Schwartz, K., Lopez, E., Rae, M., et. al. Kaiser Family Foundation. August 3, 2020. Available at

“COVID-19 Health Care Response and Resilience Program.” Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy, Families USA, and United States of Care. July 30, 2020. Available at

“How Much Fiscal Relief Can States Expect from the Temporary Increase in the Medicaid FMAP?” Rudowitz, R., Corallo, B., and Garfield, R. Kaiser Family Foundation. July 22, 2020. Available at

“US Not-For-Profit Health Care Rating and Outlook Actions, June 2020 and Second-Quarter 2020.” S&P Global Ratings. July 27, 2020. Available at

“Chart: Key Federal COVID-19 Stimulus Funding Opportunities for Health Care Providers and Hospitals.” Wynne Health Group. July 17, 2020. Available here.

“The Impact of COVID-19 on Hospital Finances.” Holt, C. American Action Forum. July 17, 2020. Available at

“CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Distribution: A Timeline.” Paavola, A. Becker’s Hospital Review. June 29, 2020. Available at

“Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Data Insights.” Phreesia. May 28, 2020. Available at

“House Passes the Heroes Act.” Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP. May 27, 2020. Available at

“Pandemic Shock Threatens to Undermine Outpatient Care.” Schneider, E. and Shah, T. The Commonwealth Fund. To the Point (blog). May 20, 2020. Available at

“The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Outpatient Visits: A Rebound Emerges.” Mehrotra, A., Chernew, M., Linetsky, D., et al. The Commonwealth Fund. May 19, 2020. Available at

“U.S. And Canadian Not-For-Profit Acute Care Health Care Organizations.” Keller, C., Zetea, N., et. al. S&P Global Ratings. Updated May 15, 2020. Available here.

“Primary Care and COVID-19: Week 9 Survey.” Primary Care Collaborative and the Larry A. Green Center. May 8, 2020. Available at

“How Covid-19 Will Impact the Financial Outlook for the Health Care Industry.” Egan, Y. Advisory Board. May 8, 2020. Available at

“Primary Care and the COVID-19 Pandemic.” Lewis, C., Seervai, S., Shah, T., et al. The Commonwealth Fund. To the Point (blog). April 22, 2020. Available at

“Targeted Options for Increasing Medicaid Payments to Providers During COVID-19 Crisis.” Boozang, P., Mann, C., Karl, A., et. al. Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLC. April 10, 2020. Available at