FY 2021 American Rescue Plan Funding for State and Regional Primary Care Associations (U5F) Frequently Asked Questions

On April 29, 2021, HRSA announced the release of approximately $16.3 million in American Rescue Plan funding for current State and Regional Primary Care Associations (PCAs). Funding will be used to provide training and technical assistance (T/TA) to health centers in each PCA’s state or region to respond to and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and enhance health care services and infrastructure.

For additional information and resources, review the U5F technical assistance webpage and use the contact information on that page to submit new questions as needed.

Categories

U5F Awards

How do we access our American Rescue Plan (U5F) task in HRSA’s Electronic Handbooks (EHBs)?

To view and begin working on your U5F Award Submission (due June 28, 2021), add your U5F award to your existing award portfolio in EHBs (see instructions).

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Why was U5F funding issued through a separate award?

To support tracking of American Rescue Plan spending, awards were issued separately from your current operational PCA award (starting with U58). American Rescue Plan PCA funding award numbers start with U5F. You will need to track and account separately for your activities supported through U5F funding.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

When can we start using our American Rescue Plan funding?

To expedite distribution of this critical funding, HRSA has made funds immediately available. However, U5F funding may not be used until your U5F Award Submission has been approved by HRSA, except for immediate cash needs to provide T/TA to health centers in your state or region as they prepare for, promote, distribute, administer, and track COVID-19 vaccines, and activities necessary to mitigate the spread of COVID–19, consistent with your notice of award (NoA).

(Added: 5/7/2021)

How do we complete the required U5F Award Submission?

You will respond to the U5F Award Submission task in your U5F award folder by uploading the required attachments outlined in the U5F Award Submission Requirement Guidance. Award submissions are due in EHBs by 11:59 p.m. ET on June 28, 2021.

The week of May 3, HRSA will email blank templates to use when developing the attachments to include in your response (e.g., project work plan). The email will go to the project director, business official, and authorizing official for your U58 award. If those individuals cannot locate the notification email, they may need to check their spam folders. Use the BPHC Contact Form to have the email re-sent. (Select “EHBs” for the Question Type, select “Applications-Systems Questions” for the BPHC Category, and select “Primary Care Associations” for the BPHC Sub Category.)

(Added: 5/7/2021)

What is the PIN to access U5F funding in the Payment Management System (PMS)?

PCAs will use the same PIN they use to access their U58 cooperative agreement funding through the PMS. If you experience any issues accessing your U5F funding, please contact your PMS accountant, whom you can identify through Find Your PMS Liaison Accountant, and/or contact the assigned Grants Management Specialist identified in your U5F NoA.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Is a separate publication plan required for this award if we already have one approved for our operational U58 award?

Yes. If you plan to create or disseminate publications with U5F funding, you must submit a separate publication plan to your project officer within 90 days of award release date.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Project Work Plan

Do we have to propose T/TA activities for each of the five activity categories?

No. Your activities must address one or more of the activity categories listed in the U5F Award Submission Requirement Guidance. The activity categories you address should help health centers in your state or region respond to the areas of greatest need.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

What if a T/TA activity aligns with multiple activity categories?

Identify the one activity category that best aligns with the activity to ensure activities are not duplicated in your U5F project work plan.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Can we update our T/TA activities after our U5F Award Submission is approved?

You may rebudget U5F funding to change activities, consistent with the purpose of U5F funding and the terms of your award, to meet evolving needs of health centers in your state or region. Contact your project officer to discuss potential adjustments prior to changing your activities.

You do not need to submit a prior approval request to rebudget U5F funding if the proposed use of funding aligns with the U5F funding intent and PCA cooperative agreement (U58) scope of project, avoids ineligible uses of funding as outlined in your NoA, and complies with 45 CFR part 75.

A prior approval request in EHBs is required if the amount of the costs to be rebudgeted: 1) exceeds 25 percent of your total U5F award, 2) shifts funds to a line item in your budget that previously had no federal funds, or 3) adds new equipment to the project or requires prior approval as per other budget or program changes cited in 45 CFR part 75 and the HHS Grants Policy Statement. Contact the Grants Management Specialist listed on your U5F NoA with questions.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Will the U5F project work plan be part of our U58 project work plan?

No, your required U5F project work plan is specific to U5F funding only, and is separate from your U58 project work plan. Your U5F project work plan will be submitted in EHBs as an attachment, unlike the U58 project work plan that you completed in EHBs.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Budget

Will we receive U5F funding in both year 1 and year 2 of the period of performance?

No. U5F funding is one-time funding, for use throughout a 2-year period of performance (May 1, 2021 – April 30, 2023). Your SF-424A Budget Information form should reflect the entire one-time U5F funding amount listed on your NoA. On your budget narrative, you should break down costs for year 1 and year 2, with the sum equal to the award amount listed on your NoA. Funds are not expected to be spent equally each year.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Can we use U5F funds on pre-award activities?

Yes. U5F funding supports pre-award costs for allowable activities dating back to January 31, 2020 that address the U5F funding purpose. Clearly identify any pre-award costs or activities in the budget narrative and project work plan included in your U5F Award Submission. Contact the Grants Management Specialist listed on your U5F NoA with questions on how to include pre-award costs in your submission materials.

Additionally, if you draw down funds before your U5F Award Submission is approved, your submitted budget must include those costs used between the date of award until submission of the budget to HRSA.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Can we use U5F funding to continue an activity started with COVID-19 funding we received last year?

U5F funds may not be used for activity costs already paid for by prior COVID-19 supplemental funding or other resources. However, U5F funding may support new costs to continue or expand T/TA activities initiated with your prior COVID-19 award or other sources of funding.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

If we received a large donation of personal protective equipment (PPE), can we use U5F funding to distribute it to health centers in our state for use in their COVID-19 response?

Yes, you can use U5F funding for shipping costs of PPE that you already have on hand. However, as a reminder, you may not use U5F funding to purchase PPE for use at the health center level.

(Added: 5/25/2021)

How should we categorize equipment that costs less than $5,000?

For budget purposes, only include equipment items on the Equipment List form if they have a unit price of $5,000 or more. Equipment that does not meet that threshold should be listed under Supplies in your budget narrative, and should not be included on the Equipment List form.

(Added: 5/7/2021)

Since the U5F award has a two-year budget period, when do we need to submit the Federal Financial Report (FFR)?

The FFR (Standard Form 425) is due annually for your U5F award. The first FFR will be due on July 30, 2022, and will be marked as “ANNUAL.” The second and final FFR of the performance period will be due on July 30, 2023, and will be marked as “FINAL.” Both FFRs will be submitted through the Payment Management System.

(Added: 5/25/2021)

Date Last Reviewed:  May 2021