Federal government approves $7.8 billion for health professionals amid coronavirus concerns

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The U.S. House of Representatives and Senate voted earlier this month to pass the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act–– HR 6074–– which approved $7.8 billion for healthcare professionals on the frontline of novel coronavirus, COVID-19, treatment.

President Donald Trump approved the act on March 6.

Long Beach Acting City Manager Tom Modica informed the city council of the fund’s approval in a March 5 memo.

Currently, the City is working with its federal lobbyists to request HR 6074 funds. These funds should cover how much money the City spent in coronavirus preparedness–– the exact cost was not readily available.

The City’s federal legislative advocate, Dentons US LLP, reported that under HR 6074 funding was provided for vaccine development, support for state and local government prevention protocols and critical medical supplies to protect the health and safety of Americans.

According to the report, $826 million will go to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to drive the development of coronavirus vaccines.

Dentons US LLP also reported $950 million will be distributed in state and local grants, with half of the money due within 30 days.

House legislators did not explicitly detail how the quarantine funding or coverage for the uninsured would be handled.

Julia Katz, government affairs analyst for the City of Long Beach, told the Signal Tribune Tuesday, March 10 that the funds were meant to cover expenses that could have occurred from Jan. 20 through March 6. Monday afternoon, City officials confirmed the first three cases of the virus in Long Beach.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention asked folks to wash their hands, refrain from touching their face and to avoid large groups in public areas if possible.