Important HRSA Updates

Provider Relief Fund; Reimbursement; COVID-19
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) shared an updated status of delayed American Rescue Plan (ARP) Rural payments and suggestions for provider action steps, overview of Phase 4, and action steps for Period 1 Reporting if providers missed the November 30 deadline.   

ARP Rural Payments 
Some applications are still in process due to the size of award, Optum Account ID challenges, and pending denial letters or HRSA’s term, No Pay Letters. If a provider disagrees with the award amount, they will have the ability to request a reconciliation review. 

In terms of Optum Account ID challenges, providers waiting for their ARP Rural applications’ determination should confirm they have an active Optum Pay Account for the TIN that they anticipate receiving funds, if determined eligible. One to two weeks are needed to process an ID request. If providers submit the ID request after November 30, they will likely receive ARP Rural payments in January. HRSA noted that a particularly common error is use of a non-payment TIN rather than the payment account application.   

HRSA recommended that providers check the three-digit TIN on the initial HRSA ARP Rural notification letter to determine whether the payment account number is being used, or, in HRSA terms, “active.” If not, this could be the payment release challenge. HRSA may send an email regarding the need to set-up an Optum account from This email address should be added to a provider’s email “safe” list to ensure it does not go to a “junk” email folder.  

Other ARP Rural payment challenges, which require manual review, include:  

  • Duplications: HRSA noted it is reviewing provider accounts with a parent or holding company to ensure there were no duplicate submissions (e.g., a parent/holding company submission as well as subsidiary submissions). The HRSA Factsheet on complex organization structures and related guidance is available here.  
  • Calculation Errors: As previously noted, the Agency continues to work through calculation errors. No additional information is needed from providers. While HRSA will not be contacting providers for additional information, they should contact HRSA via the Provider Support Line at (866) 569-3522 to request an application status update if they still have not received their ARP Rural payment in early to mid-January.    

PRF Phase 4 
The Phase 4 process should be simpler because much of the background analysis was completed for ARP Rural payments. In terms of the TIN validation step in the Phase 4 application, providers may not edit the data submitted after submitting this information for IRS validation. 

For the Tax and Financial Information submission step in DocuSign, providers can resubmit the entire application. That means if a provider wishes to edit the information in DocuSign, they must re-enter all the financial information and re-upload supporting documentation. If providers submit multiple applications, HRSA will review the last application submitted before the deadline - and this will lead to delays in Phase 4 payments. 

Phase 4 and ARP Rural Payments 
For both Phase 4 and ARP Rural payments, while delays in funding are problematic, HRSA offered two helpful points.  
  1. ​​Additional Time for Use: Phase 4 and Phase IV/Rural awards received after January 2 will offer providers six months more to use the funds due to how the reporting periods are set up. 
  2. Reconciliation Requests: Providers may request reconciliation reviews if they believe their awards are incorrect.   
HRSA noted such requests may begin to be submitted after January 22, 2022.   

​PRF Reporting Period 1   
Information has been posted at HRSA’s reporting portal for report completion, and the portal has been re-opened. Providers will have until Monday, December 20 at 11:59 PM ET to file. Providers who contacted the Support Center to alert HRSA about reporting challenges will receive an email notifying them the reporting portal is open. However, all providers - including those who did not notify HRSA of a reporting issue - may go to the portal and complete their reports with no penalty.   

PRF recipients who submitted a Reporting Period 1 report, but need to correct an error, must contact the Provider Support Line at (866) 569-3522 to gain access to their submitted report. Resubmitted reports must also be received by Monday, December 20 at 11:59 PM ET. Providers can easily access the PRF reporting portal​, as well as additional information

For assistance with reporting or portal questions, please contact the Provider Support Line at (866) 569-3522. 

ARP and Phase 4 Award Challenges 
​HRSA is unable to address provider-specific payment issues until mid-January. Providers should contact HRSA at the Provider Support Line at (866) 569-3522. The Agency has asked AHCA to collect information on challenge trends with awards so it can make national corrections. In early January, AHCA will provide contact information to submit awards challenge issues so we may share trend information with HRSA.