Updates to the Healthcare Worker Bonus Program
April 6, 2023
By: Catherine A. Graziose, Seth F. Gilbertson, Gabriel S. Oberfield, Esq., M.S.J., Stephanie H. Fedorka
The third vesting period for the Healthcare Worker Bonus (HWB) Program closed on March 31, 2023. Employers of eligible workers should now submit claims for the third vesting period through the HWB portal by May 1, 2023. This third vesting period covers employees who were employed for the 6-month period spanning Oct. 1, 2022, through March 31, 2023. Additionally, this vesting period includes employees who became eligible for the Program via the November 2022 expansion.
The closing of the third vesting period was accompanied by updates to the State-issued guidance on the HWB program. Specifically, the Department of Health added an FAQ on April 3, 2023 indicating that providers who did not submit a claim for a qualified employee eligible for a bonus from the first or second vesting period are able to file a late submission during this claiming period. Further, employers will be able to submit late claims for any prior vesting period during any submission period. Employers should document and retain information regarding the reason for any late submission. The Department of Health notes that employers should make every attempt to submit claims as soon as the employee is eligible and that this flexibility does not change the criteria that qualifies an employee for the bonus. Regardless of when claims are submitted, each employee is only eligible for two vesting periods per employer in an amount equal but not greater than $3,000 across all employers.
If you have any questions about the information contained in this memo, please contact Gabriel Oberfield, Seth Gilbertson, Stephanie Fedorka or the Bond attorney with whom you are regularly in contact.