The CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act) is the single largest stimulus package in US history. Signed by President Trump on March 27, the aid package is worth an astounding $2 trillion.
In these uncertain times, this is certainly good news for all Americans. But what does this economic stimulus package mean for you and me? What effect will the aid package have on the US healthcare community?
In this post, we’ll briefly discuss how the CARES Act will positively impact the medical community. Read on to learn more!
Benefits of the CARES Act for the Medical Community
Here’s a brief rundown of how CARES Act funding will be used for healthcare.
Under the new stimulus package, $100 billion in funding is going directly to hospitals to care for patients. The Medicare Hospital Accelerated Payment Program allows cancer hospitals, children’s hospitals, and critical care hospitals to request accelerated payments for up to 6 months.
New policies also allow the Army Corps of Engineers and FEMA to build temporary hospitals and field hospitals. This will greatly increase medical and testing capacity in areas that need it most.
2. Coronavirus Testing
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of the CARES Act is that all testing for COVID-19 is now free.
3. Funding for Community Healthcare Centers
Community health centers provide care for nearly 30 million Americans. The Trump stimulus package will provide $1.32 billion in immediate funding for these centers.
The goal of the funding is to provide early detection of SARS-CoV-2 as well as the diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19. Some of the funds should also be used for education about preventing the spread of coronavirus.
4. Drugs, Medicine, & Supplies
The CDC is getting $4.3 billion in funding for its COVID-19 programs and response efforts. In total, $11 billion is dedicated to developing diagnostic tests, vaccines, and other treatments.
The Food and Drug Administration will also receive $80 billion in funding. They’ve been directed to prioritize and expedite the approval of new drugs to treat coronavirus.
What about the need for ventilators, masks, and other medical supplies? The President approved $16 in funding to the Strategic National Stockpile to increase the availability of necessary equipment.
5. Practical Assistance for Children & Veterans
A second wave of funding in the coming months will include $24 billion going to food banks, food stamps, and child nutrition programs. Another $20 billion will be set aside for veterans and their healthcare needs.
What Does This Economic Stimulus Package Mean for You?
The hope with this Trump stimulus package is that it will give Americans the financial boost they need to ride out the coronavirus storm.
Individuals and families will benefit from the direct payment of up to $1200 per adult. Small businesses may apply for a loan to pay their employees and cover normal business expenses during the lockdown.
Equally important is what the CARES Act will do for the American healthcare system. Hopefully, it will provide everything we need until COVID-19 is a thing of the past!
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