WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV) a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) voted to pass an $8.3 billion emergency funding package to support federal, state, and local health agencies, to invest in vaccine and treatment development, and support affected small businesses with loan assistance.
“This bipartisan agreement will allow federal, state, and local government agencies to swiftly respond to the coronavirus outbreak by providing direct funding for response and prevention efforts. There is also a significant investment in the research and development of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics nationwide,” said Senator Rosen. “This spending package will also provide reimbursement for state and local governments for costs incurred while assisting the federal response to the coronavirus outbreak. Small businesses impacted by the outbreak will also be able to receive help with low-interest loans, and critical health care programs aimed at ensuring public health will receive robust funding. I am also glad to see that this bill invests $500 million in telehealth and allows the federal government to waive restrictions on telehealth during this public health emergency. The health and safety of Nevadans is my top priority, and my office is continuing to actively monitor the situation. We are also working with the entire Nevada federal and state delegation to effectively communicate how Nevada residents can prepare and protect themselves from this outbreak.”
BACKGROUND: The $8.3 billion measure includes:
• Over $2 billion to help federal, state, local, and tribal governments prevent, prepare, and respond to the crisis. This includes nearly $1 billion given directly to states to conduct preparedness and response activities;
• Over $3 billion for research, development, and review of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics to help protect the health and safety of the American people;
• Nearly $1 billion for health care preparedness, pharmaceuticals and medical supplies, and community health;
• $1 billion in loan subsidies that would support $7 billion in low-interest loans for small businesses impacted by financial losses as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.
• $500 million to enhance telehealth services, in addition to a provision allowing HHS to waive certain Medicare telehealth restrictions during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Senator Rosen has taken the following actions in the last month:
• Participated in a hearing as a member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on the federal response to COVID-19 and preparations for future global pandemics, and questioned officials from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Homeland Security.
• Questioned health experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on the opportunity to utilize telehealth as a means of treatment for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Senator Rosen also expressed support for ensuring that health insurance limitations are not an obstacle to patients seeking telehealth care.
• Questioned witnesses from the Department of Transportation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on the role of aviation in containing the spread of infectious diseases such as COVID-19 during a hearing hosted by the Senate Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Aviation and Space.
• Joined with colleagues in sending a number of letters to officials at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Department of Labor (DOL), the U.S. Census Bureau, and the Department of Education (ED), requesting information on how the departments will be responding to cases of the coronavirus.
• Last week, representatives from Senator Rosen’s office attended a briefing with Governor Sisolak and members of Nevada’s public health community to discuss the state’s preparedness for potential cases of coronavirus in Nevada.
• Last month, Senator Rosen joined her colleagues in sending a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar requesting an update on the Administration’s response to the recent coronavirus outbreak.
Nevadans can find updates on the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, by visiting the Senator’s website.