The $2 trillion CARES Act, passed by the House on Friday and promptly signed into law by President Trump, provides $200 million for nursing homes for infection control and $100 billion for grants to a broad range of health care providers.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will receive $200 million to help nursing homes with infection control and support states’ efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus in nursing homes.
The $100 billion is for providers to cover unreimbursed health care-related expenses or lost revenues resulting from the coronavirus.
In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will get $4.3 billion to support public health agencies, including $1.5 billion for public health activities such as buying personal protective equipment, surveillance for coronavirus, laboratory testing to detect positive cases, contact tracing to identify additional cases, and infection control and mitigation. Another $1.5 billion will be provided in flexible funding for efforts including repatriation and quarantine, diagnostic test kits, laboratory testing, workforce training and communications and information programs.
Other provisions relevant to the long-term care industry include:
- More than $27 billion for the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to support research and development of coronavirus vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.
- $955 million for Administration for Community Living to support nutrition programs, home and community based services, support for family caregivers, and expand oversight and protections for seniors and individuals with disabilities.
- $945 million for the National Institutes of Health for research including developing an improved understanding of the prevalence of COVID-19, its transmission and the natural history of infection, and novel approaches to diagnosing the disease and past infection, and developing countermeasures for the prevention and treatment of its various stages.
- $415 million for Defense Department research and development regarding vaccines and anti-viral pharmaceuticals.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act includes a host of other spending, tax and other measures to address COVID-19. It includes checks to most American households, relief for small businesses and unemployed workers, aid for large corporations and loans for large companies and states and cities.