The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on April 1 that the agency has begun recouping COVID-19 Accelerated and Advance Payments (CAAPs) received by Medicare providers starting on March 30, 2021.
The CMS noted that repayment begins one year starting from the date CMS issued a provider’s first CAAP through a 25% withhold of Medicare payments due to the provider. The 25% withhold will continue for 11 months, at which point the withhold will increase to 50% for 6 months.
The CMS reminded providers that if the CAAP is not fully paid after this 29 month period (comprised of the initial 12 months where no amount is due, 11 months subject to the 25% withhold, and 6 months subject to the 50% withhold), then the provider’s Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) will issue a demand letter for full repayment of any remaining balance of the CAAP.
If the CMS does not receive payment 30 days after issuance of the demand letter, interest will accrue at a rate of 4% from the date the MAC issued the demand letter. Subsequently, CMS will continue to assess interest for each full 30-day period the provider fails to repay the balance.