American Rescue Plan (ARP) COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation SHIP Funding

Health Resources and Services Administration's (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) received one-time funding through the American Rescue Plan (ARP) for COVID-19 testing and mitigation initiatives. HRSA awarded approximately $398 million to existing grantees of the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP) to work with small rural hospitals—those with fewer than 50 beds— and Critical Access Hospitals to increase COVID-19 testing efforts, expand access to testing in rural communities, and expand the range of mitigation activities to meet community needs within the CDC Community Mitigation Framework.

See the official press release here.

Program Purpose and Activities

While the FY 2021 COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation SHIP funding was awarded through SHIP, it is specifically for COVID-19 needs as outlined above and is not intended to fall within the existing SHIP funding categories.

Funded activities for this program include:

  • Testing education
  • Establishment of alternate testing sites
  • Test result processing
  • Arranging for the processing of test results
  • Engaging in other activities within the CDC Community Mitigation Framework to address COVID-19 in rural communities.

Read more about the program's background here.

ARP Grant Links and Information

No-Cost Extension Templates and Instructions

NCE Instructions

NCE Instructions (PDF Document - 2 pages)
SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation General Reporting Resources:
The SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation program requires quarterly reporting regarding hospitals’ grant-related activites and testing data. Quarterly reports must be submitted through the SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation Reporting Portal. A walkthrough of the reporting portal can be found in the FAQ section of the portal website. For more information on quarterly reporting, you can review the following webinar:

The SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation program also requires a final report (due March 30, 2023) and an equipment list (due at closeout). Templates for these reports are below.

SHIP COVID-19 T&M Final Report Template

SHIP-COVID Equipment Reporting Template

Minor Alterations/Renovations (A/R) Reporting and Documentation Requirements

SHIP Testing and Mitigation funding may be used for Minor Alteration/Renovation (A/R) activities if the activity is essential to support a hospital’s COVID-19 testing and/or mitigation strategy. See the SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation Minor A/R Instructions for more information on Minor A/R Activities.

    State Offices of Rural Health (SORHs) are required to report hospitals' minor A/R activities quarterly by uploading the following documentation requirements in EHB:
    Reminder: A/R projects that exceed 50% of hospital’s total award will require approval from your Project Officer.  This applies to either one large or several small that exceed 50%. If A/R costs exceed the hospital’s total award amount, only list the amount of SHIP COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation funding applicable to the project.  Moveable equipment purchased as part of A/R are NOT included in A/R costs. 
    Optional Resources
    The following resources provide optional templates for use in your state, and may be adjusted to work best for your state’s program. None of these forms will be submitted to HRSA.
    SHIP ARP Pre-Award Webinar - June 4, 2021

    FY 2021 COVID SHIP Testing & Mitigation Webinar - July 14, 2021

    Hospital Tools and Resources

    FY21 ARP SHIP Testing Allowable Costs (Word)


    Please direct all questions regarding the FY 2021 COVID-19 Testing and Mitigation SHIP funding to

    This project is/was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number UB1RH24206, Information Services to Rural Hospital Flexibility Program Grantees, $1,560,000 (0% financed with nongovernmental sources). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.