What do I need to do to seek reimbursement for eligible expenses incurred under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program?
You must first pay the vendor or service provider for the costs of the eligible services and/or connected devices received before requesting reimbursement for those costs from the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. The COVID-19 Telehealth Program will not directly pay a health care provider’s service providers or vendors. Upon receipt of services and/or connected devices and subsequent payment by the health care provider(s) of the costs of the eligible services and/or connected devices to the service provider or vendor, a funding recipient must submit, at least on a monthly basis:
(1) an invoice from its service provider or vendor showing, at a minimum, receipt of the service and/or connected devices identifying the eligible services and/or connected devices purchased and received, and price paid (Note: a purchase order, vendor quote, or other similar documentation does not demonstrate payment for the services and/or connected devices);
(2) a completed Request for Reimbursement Form;
(3) if applicable, a Letter of Authorization (see sample) for those applicants that received a funding commitment on behalf of other eligible health care provider sites; and
(4) any additional documentation supporting reimbursement for the eligible cost of the services and/or connected devices.
If you received and paid for non-recurring services, you can invoice for those services in one monthly invoice. Please provide detailed descriptions of the services and equipment on which you are seeking reimbursement on your Request for Reimbursement Form. If you think that additional information may be needed to support your request for reimbursement, feel free to supplement your submission with an attachment providing additional description regarding the eligible item(s).
To seek reimbursement, you must invoice the FCC using the Invoice Processing Platform (IPP), which is part of the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Fiscal Services. There you should upload the Request for Reimbursement Form and other documents listed above as attachments to that form.
If you are a funding recipient that received a funding commitment on behalf of other eligible health care provider sites, you must also submit a Letter of Authorization (see sample) from participating eligible health care providers authorizing you to accept disbursements on the behalf of those sites. Any funding received by an entity that submitted an application and received a funding commitment on behalf of other eligible health care provider sites shall reimburse the health care provider sites for their respective costs incurred under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program.
Additional information, including Instructions to the Request for Reimbursement Form, can be found at the Invoices & Reimbursements tab of the FCC's COVID-19 Telehealth Program page.
- How do I access or login to the IPP?
After you receive your notification of COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding from the FCC, you should receive two emails from the IPP (from this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org). These emails will notify you of your access to the IPP Collector module. The first email contains your IPP User ID. The second contains your temporary password. Please use these to login to the IPP for the first time.
- I haven’t received an e-mail from IPP regarding steps to enroll in the platform. What should I do?
If you do not receive the emails from the IPP with you User ID and temporary password (as mentioned in the answer to the question above), please check your email spam folder or check with your organization’s IT administrator to see if the emails may have been blocked by system settings. If you still are unable to locate the email, or if you have other questions about the IPP site, please contact the IPP Customer Support Helpdesk via email: IPPCustomerSupport@fiscal.treasury.gov or by phone: (866) 973-3131. Telephone support for the IPP is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm ET.
- If I did not submit the COVID-19 Telehealth Program Application on behalf of my organization, will I receive the emails to enroll in IPP?
The contact person for your organization that was listed on your application and funding commitment letter will be sent the IPP enrollment emails. However, your organization may already be enrolled in the IPP. If so, the Commission will notify you by email of the name of the IPP Administrator for your entity if your IPP Administrator is not the same person that submitted a COVID-19 Telehealth Program application on behalf of your organization.
The Identified Administrator is the designated person in your organization who can access the IPP and submit invoices. If you would prefer that a different person or persons have the responsibility for submitting the funding recipient’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program invoices, your IPP Administrator can set up IPP access for this person(s).
If the Identified Administrator is no longer in the position that required them to be the IPP Administrator but is still with your organization, they should add new IPP Administrators (at least two are recommended). The IPP Help Desk can assist with the transfer of the IPP Administrator role to another person.
Telephone support for the IPP is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm ET. Any questions regarding IPP enrollment, may be directed to the IPP Customer Support Helpdesk via email: IPPCustomerSupport@fiscal.treasury.gov or by phone: (866) 973-3131.
When does a Letter of Authorization need to be filed?
Applicants that received a funding commitment on behalf of other eligible health care provider sites must have a Letter of Authorization (see Sample Letter of Authorization) on file in order to receive reimbursement for those sites. The Letter of Authorization is required even if the sites listed in your Funding Commitment Letter are part of the same health system or organization – if the sites have different street addresses, then they are considered separate entities under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. If you have received more than one funding commitment, a Letter of Authorization must be filed for each funding commitment. The Letter of Authorization should be uploaded with the first monthly invoice submission to the IPP. The Letter of Authorization only needs to be uploaded once; thereafter, the FCC will have it on file for use in reviewing future reimbursement requests. We strongly encourage you to use the FCC’s sample Letter of Authorization. If not, your Letter of Authorization, at a minimum, must contain the required authorizations provided in the FCC’s sample Letter of Authorization for your health care provider sites.
- Where do I find the Request for Reimbursement Form and the Letter of Authorization?
Here are links to the Request for Reimbursement Form, Instructions to the Request for Reimbursement Form, and the Sample Letter of Authorization. Additional information on invoicing and reimbursements can be found on this page and at the Invoices & Reimbursements tab of the FCC's COVID-19 Telehealth Program page.
- Which location should be listed as the service or delivery location for eligible services and connected devices provided to patients, or used by our health care professionals to provide telehealth services outside of the health care providers’ brick and mortar location?
The eligible health care provider site for which the eligible connected devices or services were purchased must be listed as the service or delivery location. You must not list individual patient addresses or non-brick and mortar sites where telehealth services are being provided as the service or delivery location.
- How do I know what expenses are eligible for reimbursement under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program?
General guidance regarding eligible services and/or connected devices can be found on the FAQs for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program - see questions 26-30.
COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding will provide eligible health care providers support to purchase telecommunications, information services, and connected devices necessary to provide telehealth services to patients in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The Program will fund only devices (e.g., pulse oximetry, blood pressure monitoring devices, etc.) that are themselves connected, and will not fund unconnected devices that patients can use at home and then manually report the results to their medical professional. Connected devices may include devices with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity, including devices that connect to a consumer’s phone, for example. Devices for which funding is requested must be integral to patient care.
Below are examples of items ineligible for COVID-19 Telehealth Program support:
- Services or devices purchased or implemented prior to March 13, 2020 or after December 31, 2020 (NOTE: Items purchased before December 31, 2020 are eligible for reimbursement even if they have not been delivered by December 31, 2020; but you may not seek reimbursement for services or connected devices until after they have been implemented or received).
- Administrative costs, e.g., personnel expenses, consultant fees, payroll, training, customer service, project management, records management, and doctor’s costs, etc.
- Back-up power equipment, e.g., back-up batteries, redundant power cords, Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS), and surge protectors, etc.
- Separate costs for non-connected items, e.g., cases, mouse pads, cable clips, laptop bags, tablet stands, and charging stations, etc.
- Non-connected medical devices or supplies, e.g., non-connected digital thermometers, testing strips, lancets, disposable covers, and personal protective equipment, etc.
- Smart watches and fitness trackers.
- Non-telehealth items, e.g., office furniture and supplies, security systems, incidental expenses, etc.
- Construction costs, e.g., fiber, ethernet, cable network build out, facility alterations, and temporary site location structures, etc.
- Technical support, maintenance costs, warranties, support services, and protection plans.If the description on the invoice documentation uses this terminology and the expense is for more than just these costs, please provide a detailed description on the Request for Reimbursement Form or attach a separate statement with your invoice submission in IPP so that we can better determine eligibility of items sought for reimbursement.
- Carts or stands that will only be used as a workstation or desk on wheels are not eligible for support.These costs should not be included on the Request for Reimbursement Form or the request will be rejected and will need to be resubmitted excluding these costs to receive reimbursement.Telemedicine carts are eligible for support, whether bought ready-to-use from a vendor or bought piecemeal from various vendors.If you are requesting support to build your own telemedicine cart, please let us know that you are seeking to build your own telemedicine cart(s) as part of your invoice submission.
Below are examples of eligible services and connected devices that COVID-19 Telehealth Program applicants may seek funding for:
- Telecommunications Services: Voice services, for health care providers or their patients.
- Information Services: Internet connectivity services for health care providers or their patients; remote patient monitoring platforms and services; patient reported outcome platforms; store and forward services, such as asynchronous transfer of patient images and data for interpretation by a physician; platforms and services to provide synchronous video consultation.
- Connected Devices/Equipment: Tablets, smart phones, or connected devices to receive connected care services at home (e.g., broadband-enabled blood pressure monitors; pulse oximetry monitors) for patient or health care provider use; or telemedicine kiosks/carts for health care provider sites.
For questions related to eligibility of connected devices and/or services, please send an email to TelehlthInvoicSupp@fcc.gov.
- Can I invoice for existing services and/or connected devices?
Eligible health care providers may apply to receive funding through the COVID-19 Telehealth Program for eligible services and connected devices purchased on or after March 13, 2020. Invoices that include costs for existing services that were not purchased in response to COVID-19 must be removed from your request for reimbursement because retroactive services are ineligible for funding. However, if existing services were upgraded on or after March 13, 2020 to respond to COVID-19, the costs of the upgrade may be included.
- Can I seek reimbursement for recurring services?
You may seek reimbursement for up to six months of expenses for eligible recurring services as long as those services began prior to December 31, 2020. Existing services that were not purchased to respond to COVID-19 (e.g., services purchased prior to March 13, 2020) are not eligible for funding. Costs thus incurred prior to March 13, 2020 must be removed from your request for reimbursement. However, if existing services were upgraded on or after March 13, 2020, to respond to COVID-19, the costs of the upgrade may be included.
- Can I submit a request for reimbursement for items that I have paid for but have not yet received due to vendor delivery backlogs?
No. You cannot submit a request for reimbursement for services and/or connected devices that have not yet been received. Upon receipt of services and/or connected devices by the eligible health care provider(s), please submit your request for reimbursement and supporting documentation.
- If an invoice from the service provider or vendor includes ineligible items, what do I need to do when submitting the invoice submission?
Be sure to clearly indicate in your invoice submission the items on the invoice that are eligible (e.g., by crossing out the ineligible items on the invoice). On the Request for Reimbursement Form, use the column “Description of Service/Device(s) Purchased” and indicate where on the invoice the reviewer can find the relevant information for that line item.
- How do I know if the invoice submission was received?
You can use IPP’s self-service and drill-down capabilities to check the status of an invoice. If the status for an invoice reads “Pending Approval,” the invoice has been received and is under review.
- Can I make updates or corrections to an invoice submission once submitted?
Once an invoice is submitted, you cannot make updates or corrections to the invoice submission. However, if the status of your submitted invoice is “Pending Submission,” “In Exception,” or “Draft,” you can void the invoice and submit a new invoice with the updates or corrections. Otherwise, the invoice submission will first need to be rejected by the FCC in order to allow any updates or corrections. You will need to contact the FCC at TelehlthInvoicSupp@fcc.gov to make this request.
- If the invoice submission was rejected, what do I need to do?
This depends on the reason for the rejection, which will be provided in the messaging that accompanies your invoice submission rejection. A note accompanying a rejection may read, “Your invoice lacks information necessary to process. Please resubmit with: (1) Request for Reimbursement Form; and (2) Letter of Authorization.” After correcting the reason for the rejection, please resubmit your invoice submission with the missing information. You will not have re-enter all the information you previously entered, just the missing information and/or any corrections to your previous submission.
If your invoice is rejected and you do not receive a message with an explanation, send an email to TelehlthInvoicSupp@fcc.gov. Please provide the Applicant Name and Funding Commitment Number in the subject line of the email and, in the text of the email, reference the invoice at issue.
- What is the processing time for invoices once submitted?
The FCC’s goal is to pay invoices on a timely basis; however, requests for reimbursement that contain incomplete information, or request funding for ineligible services or devices, may delay processing. (See Question #10 of the FAQs for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program.) To ensure that the FCC can promptly provide reimbursement, please be sure to include all required information in the Request for Reimbursement Form and supporting documentation.
Which entity issues the payment, and where is the payment sent?
The U.S. Department of the Treasury will issue the payments. The payments will be sent by Automated Clearing House (ACH) to the bank account on file associated with the funding recipient. Your banking information was previously provided when you registered with the federal System for Award Management.
Is there a deadline for submitting invoices?
Yes, the deadline for submitting invoices is July 31, 2021. You must file requests for reimbursement on or before this date to receive reimbursement for eligible expenses provided to eligible health care providers under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. The FCC will not accept original requests for reimbursement filed after the invoicing deadline. You may, however, resubmit requests for reimbursement in instances where your original request for reimbursement was submitted on or before July 31, 2021, but rejected on or after that date.
Do funding recipients need to submit quarterly reports to the FCC to comply with the reporting requirements of the CARES Act?
Recipients of COVID-19 Telehealth Program payments do not need to submit separate quarterly reports to the FCC or the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee. The FCC is working with the Department of Treasury to reflect the status of all COVID-19 Telehealth Program awards and payments on USAspending.gov. Posting the data to USAspending.gov meets the reporting requirements of the CARES Act, per guidance from the Office of Management and Budget. Please see Appendix A of OMB Memo M-20-21, Implementation Guidance for Supplemental Funding Provided in Response to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Please note, however, that the FCC’s Report and Order (FCC 20-44, para. 34) implementing the COVID-19 Telehealth Program provides that program participants should provide a report to the Commission on the effectiveness of the COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding no later than six months after the conclusion of the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. Funding recipients should submit their post-program reports by January 31, 2022—six months after the invoicing deadline for the initial round of funding under the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. Please feel free to submit your post-program report as soon as possible after receiving your final reimbursement. These reports will provide the Commission with important feedback on whether and how the COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding impacted health outcomes, patient treatment, health care facility administration, and any other relevant aspects of a funding recipient's response to COVID-19. Please click on COVID-19 Telehealth Program Post-Program Report Template and download this template to use when preparing your post-program report. Once completed, funding recipients should file their completed post-program report template in WC Docket No. 20-89 in the Commission’s electronic comment filing system, available at https://www.fcc.gov/ecfs/.