WASHINGTON, D.C.— America’s emergency care teams—which serve on the frontlines of any pandemic response—have urged Congress to approve emergency supplemental appropriations to ensure our health system has the resources necessary to address an outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the U.S.
“More can and should be done to minimize the risk of coronavirus in the United States,” said William Jaquis, MD, FACEP, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP). “It is critical that we empower our nation’s emergency care teams and public health experts to protect millions of people and respond quickly and effectively to this virus.”
In a letter sent this week to the House Appropriations Committee, ACEP and the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) request an increase in funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) and Global Affairs. Additional resources would greatly improve hospital preparedness, public health emergency preparedness, research and development of medical treatments and public awareness.
“As the safety net for our communities, emergency departments across the country are filled with patients who have nowhere else to go for their health care needs. The emergence of novel coronavirus as a possible pandemic, amid an already challenging flu season, serves as a reminder that we must ensure our health communities – first responders, public health departments and hospitals – have the necessary resources to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and to provide the best possible care to all patients,” said ENA President Mike Hastings, MSN, RN, CEN.
You read the full letter to Congress here.