WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), released the following statement commemorating National Public Health Week and honoring the many medical professionals working to protect public health against COVID-19.
“In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, we must commit ourselves to taking actions to protect our health and the health of our communities.” said Senator Rosen. “We also should shine a light on the incredible work and sacrifices being made by medical professionals in our state and across the country, and make sure that these heroes are equipped with much-needed medical equipment to do their jobs safely. These brave men and women are working tirelessly to keep us healthy and safe, and we owe them our eternal gratitude.”
BACKGROUND: Earlier today, Senator Rosen announced that she joined colleagues in sending a bicameral letter to Vice President Pence urging the White House Coronavirus Task Force to direct the Federal Government to mobilize and coordinate the distribution of vital medical supplies to make sure scarce equipment is delivered in a timely manner to regions that are hit hardest by COVID-19.
Senator Rosen voted in support of the bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The bill provides:
• $100 billion for a new program to provide direct aid to health care institutions on the front line of this crisis
• $16 billion to replenish the Strategic National Stockpile supplies of pharmaceuticals, personal protective equipment, and other medical supplies, which are distributed to State and local health agencies, hospitals and other healthcare entities facing shortages during emergencies.
• $4.3 billion to support federal, state, and local public health agencies.
• $3.5 billion for BARDA to expand the production of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics to help combat this pandemic.
• $1 billion for the Defense Production Act, enabling industry to quickly ramp up production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other urgently needed medical supplies, PLUS billions of dollars more for federal, state, and local health agencies to purchase such equipment.
• Medicare coverage for telehealth from health centers and rural health clinics, use of telehealth to order hospice, allows telehealth for new patients.
Last year, Senator Rosen co-sponsored the Resident Physician Shortage Act of 2019 (S. 348), which would reduce the shortage of physicians in Nevada and the rest of the United States by increasing the number of Medicare-supported graduate medical education (GME) residency slots.