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Higgins Announces Passage of Legislation to Provide $8.3 Billion in Funding for a Rapid Response to Coronavirus

Mar 4, 2020
Press Release

Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced House passage of H.R. 6074, the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2020. The bill provides $8.3 billion for a robust response to COVID-19, the “Coronavirus,” including vaccine development, support for state and local governments, and assistance for affected small business.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that was first identified as a result of an outbreak in Wuhan, China in December 2019. Symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to those of other respiratory illnesses, and include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Patients can also subsequently develop pneumonia after contracting the virus. Since the end of December there have been over 95,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus worldwide leading to more than 3,200 deaths.

This legislation would provide:

  • $2.2 billion to for prevention, preparedness and response at the federal, state, and local levels;
  • Over $3 billion for research and development of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics;
  • Nearly $1 billion for the procurement of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies;
  • $300 million to ensure access to affordable vaccines;
  • $1.25 billion to protect Americans by preventing the spread of Coronavirus worldwide;
  • Makes an estimated $7 billion in low-interest loans available to small businesses impacted by the outbreak.

Earlier this week Higgins called for emergency funding in a speech on the House floor: “We need to fund scientific research that can quickly diagnose and provide therapies to prevent and treat the virus. We need to give our first responders, doctors, nurses, and public health workers, who are on the front lines of fighting this virus, the resources and support that they need. And we need to all look after each other.”

(https://youtu.be/6ybNZevL3Ug)

For more information on COVID-19 and precautions to take, visit: https://higgins.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/coronavirus-disease

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