In follow-up to a virtual meeting held Wednesday, April 10, in conversation on the Change Healthcare cyberattack with Jon Blum, CMS’s Principal Deputy Administrator & Chief Operating Officer, and Roger Connor, Optum Insight’s Chief Executive Officer, the AMA is making the following information and resources available:

  • The AMA Press Release on most recent Change Healthcare Cyberattack informal survey results is available online. The results show the ongoing, devastating impact of the Change Healthcare cyberattack, which threatens the viability of physician practices across the country, and, according to respondents, has serious implications for patient care.
  • According to UnitedHealth Group (UHG), it continues to emphasize the availability of advance/accelerated payments to providers in need. Optum’s CEO emphasized that the program has more flexibility than it did originally. For more information, please visit Temporary Funding Assistance for Providers. This program is designed to help bridge the gap in short-term cash flow needs for providers impacted by the disruption of Change Healthcare’s services. In particular, UHG encourages practices that find the amount prepopulated in the Optum Pay system insufficient to meet their financial needs to please contact UHG—either submit a request through the Temporary Funding Assistance Program Form or call 1-877-702-3253.
  • UHG also stressed that it has no plans or timetable yet to require repayment of these funds. Until all claims submission and payment systems are back up and running, UHG is not requesting repayment. UHG indicated that a practice-level, phased approach will be used to ensure that an individual organization’s functionality has been restored before repayment is requested.
  • More information about the CMS Change Healthcare/Optum Payment Disruption (CHOPD) program is available online. Physicians and other Medicare providers experiencing disruption because of the Change Healthcare outage can apply for “amounts representative of up to 30 days of Medicare claims payments.” HHS also distributed these resources (PDF) to assist physicians, pharmacists and hospitals, in the aftermath of the Change Healthcare cybersecurity attacks.
  • The AMA will continue to raise issues of concern to UHG, CMS, state regulators, and other payers. Additional information from the AMA is also available on the Change Healthcare cyber outage webpage.
  • If you know of a practice that is particularly struggling and needs help with UHG, please reach out to your AMA Field Representative.