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Nearly $3 Trillion Provided in Emergency Funding to Respond to COVID-19

Posted By Celia Hagan, MPH, Vice President, CRD Associates, Friday, May 8, 2020
Updated: Friday, May 8, 2020

 There has been a flurry of activity on Capitol Hill over the past month as the U.S. Congress responds to the COVID-19 pandemic by providing emergency supplemental funding. In just over seven weeks, Congress has provided nearly $3 trillion to assist state and local public health efforts, stabilize the economy, provide assistance to small businesses and industries, and increase testing capacity. Notably, $500 million was provided to the Data Modernization Initiative to transition public health data systems to automated, interoperable, electronic systems. Below is a high-level summary of the public health provisions passed in the supplemental bills.

March 5, 2020

Phase 1: The Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2020 (H.R. 6074)

Designed to prevent, prepare for, and respond to COVID-19

  • Total funding: $8.3 billion
  • Funding for CDC: $1.9 billion

o   $950 million for state and local response efforts

o   $300 million to replenish the Infectious Disease Rapid Reponses Reserve Fund

  • Other significant provisions:

o   Funds BARDA and NIH to conduct research and develop vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics

o   Funds NIH to conduct research on therapies, vaccines, diagnostics, and other health technologies

o   Funds FDA to develop and review vaccines, therapeutics, medical devices and counter measures, and address supply chain issues.

o   Funds the Small Business Administration to provide disaster loans

March 18, 2020

Phase 2: Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201)

Designed to provide immediate relief to individuals out of work due to the pandemic

  • Total funding: $3.5 billion
  •  Other significant provisions:

o   Requires employers to provide emergency sick leave

o   Provides funding to cover COVID-19 testing costs

o   Extends unemployment benefits

March 27, 2020

Phase 3: Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (H.R. 748)

Designed to provide financial assistance to individuals, small businesses, distressed industries, hospitals, and health care providers

  • Total funding: $2 trillion
  • Funding for CDC: $4.3 billion

o   $1.5 billion for grants and cooperative agreements for state and local responses

o   $500 million for global disease detection

o   $500 million for the Data Modernization Initiative

o   $300 million to replenish the Infectious Disease Rapid Response Reserve Fund

  • Other significant provisions:

o   Establishes the Paycheck Protection Program

o   Establishes the Economic Injury Disaster Loans for small, medium, and large businesses

o   Provides relief for hospitals and health care providers to reimburse COVID-19 related expenses and lost revenue

April 24, 2020

Phase 3.5: Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act (H.R. 266)

  • Total funding: $484 billion

o   $321.3 billion in additional lending authority for the Paycheck Protection Program, with some funds set aside to support loans issued by smaller lenders

o   $10 billion for additional economic impact disaster loans to small businesses

o   $75 billion for hospitals and health care providers

o   $25 billion for virus testing

§  Funding for CDC: $1 billion for surveillance, epidemiology, contract tracing and other activities to support testing

§  An additional $11 billion in the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund will be directed towards states, localities, territories, and American Indian tribes to support COVID-19 responses based on their relative number of cases

  • Other significant provisions:

o   Replenishes the Paycheck Protection Program

o   Provides additional relief for hospitals and health care providers to reimburse COVID-19 related expenses and lost revenue

o   Funds COVID-19 testing activities to detect active infection and to determine previous exposure

Looking ahead, Congress has expressed interest in a Phase 4 supplemental package, but the timing of this is still uncertain. While the House wants to move quickly, the Senate has pushed back on moving too quickly in face of the growing deficit – some Republicans have expressed an interest in allowing more time to pass while we review what resources are needed before investing more. Democratic leadership and the White House have mentioned policy proposals that could include state and local government funding to infrastructure initiatives or payroll tax relief. CSTE will continue to keep you updated as the supplementals evolve and different aspects of the relief efforts are implemented broadly.


Celia Hagan, MPH is vice president at Cavarocchi Ruscio Dennis Associates, LLC, which represents CSTE’s interests on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.


 

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