CMS Releases Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payment Guidance

CMS; Medicare
​​​On October 8, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released updated Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payment guidance based upon the recently enacted Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act.  

The CMS guidance outlines the following repayment schedule:  
  • Repayment does not begin for one year starting from the date the accelerated or advance payment was issued (e.g., the date a SNF received its payment);  
  • Beginning at one year from the date the payment was issued and continuing for 11 months, Medicare payments owed to providers and suppliers will be recouped at a rate of 25 percent; 
  • After the 11 months end, Medicare payments owed to providers and suppliers will be recouped at a rate of 50 percent for another six months; and  
  • After the six months end, a letter for any remaining balance of the accelerated or advance payment(s) will be issued.  
  • If such a letter is issued, SNFs will have 30 days from the date of the letter to repay the balance in full. If payment is not received within 30 days, interest will accrue at the rate of 4 percent from the date the letter was issued, and will be assessed for each full 30-day period that the balance remains unpaid. Information related to Extended Repayment Schedules will be included in these letters. CMS may immediately issue these letters to SNFs who received accelerated or advance payments in error. 

In a departure from previous policy, CMS notes that SNFs can submit one or more lump sum payments to pay off all or some of their total balance. To arrange a lump sum payment, CMS indicates SNFs should contact their MAC(s) for more instructions on how to make a lump sum payment, especially if payment will be made after the repayment timeframe begins.   

For questions related to the Accelerated and Advance Payment Program, CMS has established COVID-19 hotlines at each MAC that are operational Monday through Friday to assist all providers with accelerated or advance payment concerns. Providers can contact the MAC that services their geographic area(s). To locate designated MAC areas, refer to the MAC Contact section of this document or visit the MAC website list.

For More Information 

The CMS Factsheet is located here and the FAQ document is located here.