The state today announced $100 million in federal CARES Act money is available to Delaware healthcare companies to help with expenses created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Health Care Relief Fund will offer different levels of support in different categories through grants that must be applied for.
The fund was announced Tuesday by Gov. John Carney and Molly Magarik, secretary of the state Department of Health and Social Services during Carney’s weekly COVID-19 press conference.
Hospital systems, nursing homes, home health care agencies, behavioral health service providers and developmental disability providers will be eligible for funding.
“Due to the fact that we’ve already seen roughly $10 million of funding go to efforts with communities in New Castle County, we are trying to focus these new funds on Kent and Sussex counties,” Margarik said.
“Delaware’s health care workers have been looking out for the most vulnerable Delawareans since the beginning of this crisis,” Carney said. “We owe them our support.”
Efforts were unsuccessful to immediately get reactions from Delaware hospitals.
The public-private partnership of Health Communities Delaware will also be given funding to help communities that have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 all across Delaware.
The spending is sliced into categories related to the need that healthcare institutions are facing now, including tech upgrades, personal protective equipment, environmental modification, and network integrity support.
The first wave of funding will be for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
That’s partly because “the funding that has so far been available to this group at the federal level has been inadequate, Magarik claimed.
Application criteria will start to be publicized as early as Friday, when information for intellectual/developmental disability providers could be ready to go.
However, Magarik said that those who think they are eligible for funding should begin getting paperwork together as soon as possible, including receipts for things like environmental changes and PPE.
Planned efforts that incur some kind of costs that will occur before the 30th of December are eligible for funding as well, she said.
Rules will include that those who apply for network integrity support will not be eligible for funding towards PPE payments or environmental modification.
“We will have support for individual entities to really figure out where they fit in this process and what is the best way to apply for funding,” Magarik said.
Healthcare organizations who have questions about the funding can send them to DHSS_CaresQuestions@delaware.gov , but Margarik and Carney urged to organizations to wait until the applications and information had been posted, because it will answer many questions.
The state has about $1 billion in federal CARES Act money to spend, and under the rules, the money must be spent by Dec. 3 or forfeited.