March 05, 2020

Congressman Neguse Helps Pass $8.3 Billion Emergency Supplemental to Address the Coronavirus Epidemic

Washington D.C.— Congressman Joe Neguse, who represents Colorado’s 2nd Congressional District in Congress, has helped pass the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, emergency supplemental funding to help address the Coronavirus epidemic. The funding package which comprises bipartisan and bicameral agreement passed the House on Wednesday and cleared the Senate this afternoon.

The bill includes over $9 million in emergency CDC funding for Colorado.

“Americans urgently need a coordinated and, fully-funded response from the Federal government to keep us safe from the widening coronavirus epidemic,” said Congressman Joe Neguse. “The emergency supplemental will provide funding for vaccines, disaster relief loans for our community’s small businesses, pharmaceuticals and protection for first responders and health care workers. Additionally, this legislation will help ensure seniors can access telemedicine services in our rural communities across Colorado and ensure our state will be reimbursed for costs incurred while assisting the Federal response.”

H.R. 6074, Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act includes: 

  • More than $3 billion for research and development of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics;
  • $2.2 billion in public health funding for prevention, preparedness, and response, $950 million of which is to support state & local health agencies; 
  • Nearly $1 billion for procurement of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies, to support healthcare preparedness and Community Health Centers, and to improve medical surge capacity; 
  • $61 million to facilitate the development and review of medical countermeasures, devices, therapies, and vaccines, and to help mitigate potential supply chain interruptions; 
  • $1.25 billion to address the coronavirus abroad to help keep Americans safe here at home; and 
  • Allows for an estimated $7 billion in low-interest loans to affected small businesses, to help cushion the economic blow of this public health emergency. 

The legislation also protects against price-gouging of these medicines developed with taxpayer dollars by ensuring that the federal government will only pay a fair and reasonable price for coronavirus vaccines and drugs and providing HHS the authority to ensure that they are affordable in the commercial market.

Additionally, Congressman Neguse joined a letter from the full Colorado delegation yesterday reiterating the State of Colorado’s request to suspend the current application process and extend current contracts with the same funding levels to allow public health officials to continue their work. Read it here.