U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado (NY-19) released the following statement on the bipartisan legislation passed by the House March 4, 2020, to support public health efforts to address COVID-19.
“Today, the House took decisive, bipartisan action to prepare our country for the spread of COVID-19. This legislative package includes important new funding that supports our public health officials and first responders. It is clear that the coronavirus requires an effective, coordinated, and comprehensive government-wide response. This is the first of many actions we must take to prepare for the spread of COVID-19,” said Rep. Delgado.
The bipartisan legislation passed by the House today includes:
- More than $3 billion for research and development of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics;
- $2.2 billion in public health funding for prevention, preparedness, and response, $950 million of which supports state & local health agencies;
- Nearly $1 billion for procurement of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies, to support healthcare preparedness and Community Health Centers, and to improve medical surge capacity;
- $61 million to facilitate the development and review of medical countermeasures, devices, therapies, and vaccines, and to help mitigate potential supply chain interruptions;
- $1.25 billion to address the coronavirus abroad to help keep Americans safe at home; and
- Allows for low-interest loans to affected small businesses, to help cushion the economic blow of COVID-19.
The emergency supplemental also contains other strong provisions to ensure a full response. The bill:
- Allows seniors to access telemedicine services for coronavirus treatment;
- Ensures state and local governments are reimbursed for costs incurred while assisting the federal response.