Current Affairs

Donald Trump to sign new bill to tackle coronavirus threat, after Senate gives its approval

Donald Trump to sign new bill to tackle coronavirus threat, after Senate gives its approval

US President Donald Trump will soon sign a new bill worth around $8.3 billion to stop the spread of coronavirus in the nation. The bill was passed by the US Senate on March 5, 2020.

The Senate passed the bill with majority votes of 96-1. The House of Representatives had passed the bill previously on March 4 with a majority of 415-2 votes.

The bill aims to accelerate the government’s response to tackle the rapid spread of the deadly coronavirus in the nation. The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases has risen to 233 in the United States, including 14 deaths.  

New US bill to tackle COVID-19: Key Highlights

Under the new bill, the federal public health agencies will be provided with funds to conduct tests, provide treatment, get vaccines and help the local governments prepare to respond to the coronavirus threat and deliver medicines to those in need.

The bill proposes to provide around $2 billion to the local and state governments to help them prepare for the spread of the deadly virus.

The US will also introduce the ‘telehealth’ consultations to reduce doctor visits. The sick people will be able to get treatment at home, without the need of visiting a doctor, reducing the chances of virus spread.

Significance

The bill is expected to increase access to public lab testing and also help pay for isolation and quarantine of infected or suspected patients. It will also help local organizations better track the virus and limit its exposure. It also aims to ensure protection against possible price rise of the vaccines and other medicines.

Background

The new bill has almost tripled the amount that was outlined by the Trump administration over a week ago. The US President had proposed to release funds worth $2.5 billion to combat the virus. However, the proposal was rejected by the members of Congress, as they felt that no expense should be spared to protect the American people.

Source: AFP


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