4/06/2020 — 

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse, along with Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline, today announced a new $666,000 grant from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to support Rhode Island’s COVID-19 response.  This funding will go directly to the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) for testing, lab support, supplies, surveillance systems, contact tracing, and supporting quarantine efforts.

The funding stems from the phase one $7.8 billion appropriation that Congress approved back on March 5, which directed $2.2 billion for the CDC to help states with COVID-19 preparedness.  Today’s allotment comes in addition to the $5.4 million Rhode Island already received in recent weeks, bringing the total federal funding for the state’s response from this appropriation to over $6 million so far.

“We approved these federal funds to bolster the state’s capacity to combat COVID-19 and help save lives.  The Rhode Island Department of Health urgently needs this money to help protect public health,” said the members of the Congressional delegation said in a joint statement.  “Time is of the essence and the Trump Administration must swiftly disburse needed funds to states as they face a surge of patients.  Significantly more resources should be on the ground here soon, as the federal government begins to administer the $100 billion Marshall Plan for hospitals that Congress approved in the CARES Act.”

According to the CDC,  this grant will support a range of activities such as lab equipment, supplies, staffing, shipping, infection control, surge staffing, monitoring of individuals, and data management.