On Monday, October 19, 2020, Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson and Department of Children and Families Commissioner Christine Norbut Beyer announced the Departments will use federal Coronavirus Relief Fund resources to provide up to $25 million to help providers of home health, developmental disability, child welfare and homeless services remain open and accessible during the pandemic. They will be reimbursed for the added costs they are incurring due to COVID-19 for essentials such as PPE and enhanced cleaning.

“Many New Jerseyans rely on community-based services for daily support, including round-the-clock care, but those who provide the services are facing new and unanticipated costs associated with the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency,” Commissioner Johnson said. “We are making new funding available to help community-based providers continue to care for some of our most vulnerable residents.”

Those eligible include licensed developmental disability and traumatic brain injury group homes; developmental disability facility-based day programs; programs that are part of New Jersey’s child maltreatment prevention network, including Family Success Centers (FSCs), and Home Visiting Programs; providers of critical child welfare services such as visitation, supportive housing, and family strengthening programs; homeless shelters that accept reimbursement from Human Services’ Division of Family Development; providers of Intensive In-Home services, Care Management Organizations and Family Support Organizations operating within the NJ Children’s System of Care; non-residential programs supporting victims of domestic violence and their families; and personal care assistance agencies that participate in New Jersey’s Medicaid program and provided Medicaid services during calendar year 2020.

Through this initiative, programs that had previously received state or federal Coronavirus Relief Funding would be ineligible to receive funds.

Those who qualify and are eligible providers to receive funds will be reimbursed for pandemic-related expenses dating from Governor Murphy’s March 9th declaration of a public health emergency through November 13th, the deadline by which to submit applications for reimbursement.

The expenses that will be reimbursed must be new expenses resulting from COVID-19 and must not have been previously budgeted through these providers. Reimbursement may vary depending on need, number of expenses and the number of qualified applicants.

Some examples of qualifying, COVID-19 related costs include personal protective equipment (PPE), cleaning and infection control and HIPAA-compliant technology to facilitate remote services.

Providers can learn more about the program here for DHS-contracted providers and here for DCF-contracted providers.