WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) announced today that Louisiana has received more than $454 million in funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. This money was appropriated by Congress through relief measures Cassidy supported.
“The federal funding secured for Louisiana’s COVID-19 response has saved lives and protected the health of frontline workers. As Congress debates a new coronavirus response bill, the health and safety of the people of Louisiana remain my top priority,” said Dr. Cassidy.
Louisiana has also received federal support to buy hundreds of millions of personal protective equipment (PPE) items for frontline workers. These include:
- 4.5 million N95 masks
- 9.3 million surgical masks
- 632,000 face shields
- 3.5 million gowns/coveralls
- 277 million gloves
Cassidy has been Louisiana’s leading advocate for COVID-19 assistance throughout the pandemic. He has introduced the SMART Act to help state and local communities avoid mass layoffs of police officers, firefighters, teachers and other essential workers. The legislation is supported by Louisiana’s parish presidents, the Louisiana Municipal Association and Louisiana’s chambers of commerce executive committee.
Cassidy also added several provisions into the initial CARES Act, which included:
- $300 million for fishery assistance
- Requirement for private health insurance plans to cover coronavirus vaccines and treatments.
- Expanded patients’ access and Medicare coverage for telehealth services from federally-qualified health centers and rural health clinics during the coronavirus outbreak.
- The Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act to limit liability for health care professionals who volunteer to provide health care services in response to the pandemic.
- A provision for student loan flexibility that allows for students to drop college courses during the outbreak without having to repay federal financial aid, including Pell grants and student loans.
- Allowing foreign institutions to offer distance learning for the roughly 30,000 American students studying overseas during the pandemic.
To learn more about Cassidy’s efforts to combat COVID-19, visit www.cassidy.senate.gov/coronavirus-response.