EY helps the State of Illinois with CARES Act funding
The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services engaged Ernst & Young LLP to help design and deploy technology to distribute CARES Act payments to Medicaid suppliers
After the outbreak of COVID-19, Congress approved and President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in March 2020. This $2.2 trillion economic rescue package was designed to help families, small businesses, hospitals and local governments. The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) received an $830 million appropriation from the U.S. Treasury’s $150 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund that was established by the CARES Act. HFS endeavored to distribute this unprecedented funding, providing financial relief to its most vulnerable populations.
Through our relationship with EY, Healthcare and Family Services created a program to distribute hundreds of millions of dollars to our providers in need caused by the pandemic.
The State of Illinois appropriated a portion of its CARES Act funding to provide support to Medicaid providers as the COVID-19 public health emergency unfolded. The payments were programmed to offset COVID-19-related costs from March 1, 2020 through December 30, 2020, such as hazard pay for direct care workers, personal protective equipment purchases and other pandemic-related expenditures.
HFS engaged Ernst & Young LLP to help design and deploy technology to distribute CARES Act payments in compliance with federal regulations, including a public-facing portal to allow Medicaid providers to submit electronic applications for funding and to facilitate direct communication with the applicants throughout all phases of the program. EY developed a call center to respond to inquiries and streamline responses, reducing the burden on HFS’s limited resources. Ultimately, the HFS and EY team established an end-to-end state and federal compliance grant management program — from determining provider eligibility, application review, award determination and recipient monitoring, to grant closeout and audit preparedness.
“We closely collaborated with HFS to identify and implement the processes and technology required to efficiently distribute payments to providers in critical need,” said Gabe Sanders, State of Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Missouri - Government and Public Sector Leader, Ernst & Young LLP.
“We are helping HFS focus on both immediate and future components of its federal grant program, balancing the urgency to distribute payments as quickly as possible while evaluating the impacts of the myriad multiyear state and federal compliance requirements,” said Gary Burke, Ernst & Young LLP Forensics Partner leading the HFS engagement.
“Through our relationship with EY, Healthcare and Family Services created a program to distribute hundreds of millions of dollars to our providers in need caused by the pandemic,” said Theresa Eagleson, Director of the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. “We worked expeditiously to develop new methodologies to help ensure payments got to those most impacted, including areas hit hardest by the pandemic.”