New York’s frontline essential health care and mental hygiene workers have helped us through a once-in-a-century public health crisis and transformed our state into a model for fighting and defeating COVID-19.
To attract talented people to the profession at such a tense time, while retaining those who have worked so tirelessly over the past two years, we must recognize and reward the efforts of our health care and mental health staff financially for their service. . To accomplish this, as part of New York State’s FY 2023 Executive Budget legislation, $1.2 billion in funding has been allocated to pay bonuses for certain health care workers in First line.
Located in Part ZZ of Chapter 56 of the Statutes of 2022, the HWB provision allows for the payment of premiums to “recruit, retain and reward mental health and hygiene workers” meeting the specified eligibility criteria. Premium amounts will be proportional to the number of hours worked by eligible workers covered by the HWB program during the designated vesting periods up to a total of $3,000 per covered worker.
The official New York State press release is available at the following link: Governor Hochul Launches Bonus Program for Healthcare Workers.
Healthcare Worker Bonus (HWB) Program Town Hall Webinar Friday, August 19, 2022 11:00 a.m. (Slide Deck) (Recording)
Qualified employers include certain providers with at least one employee who bill for services under the state Medicaid plan or Home or Community Services (HCBS) waiver, providers who have a provider agreement to bill Medicaid services provided or arranged through a managed care organization or managed long-term care plan, and certain educational institutions and other funded programs. These include certain providers, facilities, pharmacies and school health centers licensed under the State Public Health Act, Mental Hygiene Act and Education Act, as well as as well as some programs funded by the Office of Mental Health (OMH), Office for the Aging, Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) and Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).
Submission details for qualified employers will differ depending on whether they are Medicaid or non-Medicaid employers.
Medicaid employers must be currently enrolled and payable through eMedNY and have an active MMIS ID in order to submit on the HWB program portal. Providers who are not currently registered with eMedNY should visit the eMedNY website to learn more about how to register.
Employers submitting claims for non-Medicaid employees must submit through the HWB program portal using their SFS Provider ID. Employers whose staff are eligible for premiums but not eligible for labor premiums under Medicaid should contact the appropriate state agency under which they operate for program details. Agencies whose providers do not have an active (non-Medicaid) MMIS ID may include: Office of Mental Health, Office of People with Developmental Disabilities, Office of Children and Family Services and the Office of Addiction Services and Supports.
The education portion of the bonus program will roll out in October.
Medicaid recipients who are qualified employers but employ state-paid workers must go through their respective state agency.
Qualified employees must be “front-line health care and mental hygiene practitioners, technicians, assistants and assistants who provide health or care services to people”. An employee is only qualified if they work for a qualified employer (as described above) and under an eligible worker title (as described below).
Employees must meet the following eligibility criteria:
- Qualified employees must be continuously employed by a qualified employer for at least one vesting period (see below)
- Qualified employees must have an employee title on the list of Eligible worker titles;
- Qualified employees must not exceed an annualized base salary (excluding any bonus or overtime pay) of $125,000, as evidenced by an employee attestation, which they must complete and return to their employer;
- Qualified employees can be full-time, part-time or temporary employees as well as independent contractors; and
- Qualified employees should not be suspended or barred from the Medicaid program during the vesting period.
Qualified employers are required to submit premium payment claims for their qualified employees who meet the eligibility criteria (as described above) for participation in the HWB program.
Applications must be submitted for qualified employees within 30 days of the ministry issuing a vesting schedule for completed vesting periods, and thereafter within 30 days of the end of each vesting period. additional acquisition. An employee becomes eligible if he has worked for the employer for the duration of a vesting period.
Upon employee vesting, qualified employers must provide employees with an employee certification form and request that it be returned to the employer by the claim due date (i.e. i.e. 30 days after acquisition).
Qualified employers must Pay bonuses to the eligible employee no later than 30 days after the payment of the bonus amount to the eligible employer.
Qualified Employers will pay bonuses to Qualified Employees based on the number of hours worked during the vesting period, as defined below:
- Qualified employees who work at least 20 hours but not more than 30 hours per week are entitled to a bonus of $500;
- Qualified employees who work at least 30 hours but no more than 35 hours per week are eligible for a $1,000 bonus; and
- Qualified employees who work at least 35 hours per week are eligible for a bonus of $1,500.
A qualified employee is entitled to a maximum of two vesting periods per employer. The maximum an employee can receive is $3,000.
A vesting period is defined as a series of six-month periods between the dates of October 1, 2021 and March 31, 2024. A vesting period must include a period of six consecutive months. Employers will claim for all eligible employees whose 6 month vesting period ends within the defined vesting periods as set out below
|A||October 1, 2021||March 31, 2022||August 3, 2022||September 2, 2022|
|Of them||April 1, 2022||September 30, 2022||October 1, 2022||October 31, 2022|
|Three||October 1, 2022||March 31, 2023||April 1, 2023||May 1, 2023|
|Four||April 1, 2023||September 30, 2023||October 1, 2023||October 31, 2023|
|Five||October 1, 2023||March 31, 2024||April 1, 2024||May 1, 2024|
The Vesting period schedule is also available for download in PDF format.
A qualified employer who fails to identify, claim, and/or pay premium for more than 10% of premium-eligible workers may be subject to penalties of up to $1,000 per violation of the HWB program.
The Office of the Medicaid Inspector General (OMIG) will verify payments posted by eMedNY to ensure funds have been properly claimed and distributed.
Employer Submission Process
Qualified employers are required to claim the premium on behalf of their employees. An employee cannot independently claim bonuses.The following certifications will be required for a complete claim submission:
The employer must create an account using a valid MMIS ID, on the HWB Program Portal by registering on or after Wednesday, August 3, 2022.
Employers submitting claims for non-Medicaid employees should submit their claims using the HWB program portal using their SFS Provider ID.
Once registered, employers must either:
- download a submission template that will allow bulk data submissions, or
- may choose to submit by manual entry.
The Technical Portal Guide instructions are on the HWB Program Portal.
Worker titles eligible for the bonus
The titles of employed workers eligible for the premium include certain workers who provide practical assistance with health (i.e. clinical) services or care (i.e. non-clinical) services. To be frontline, these workers must directly provide or support the delivery of health services or patient care in certain settings and work under one of the titles listed in the law. These qualifying worker titles are listed under SOS § 367-w(2)(a)(i) and (ii) and reflect titles from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and Consolidated Fiscal Reporting and Claiming job listings. (CFR) of the state. manual or under the authority provided by SOS § 367-w(2)(a)(iii).
Note on “All Other Health Care Support Workers”: This title refers to other workers who are similar to the titles listed in this act and who support the delivery of frontline patient health care services for those titles. These workers must support the direct patient care provided in a patient care unit of a hospital or other institutional medical facility in support of patient treatment and care.
The full list of eligible worker titles is listed in the table below:
Additional information can be found on the HWB Program Portal or by calling Health Worker Premium (HWB) Call Center at: (866) 682-0077