HHS Awards $15 Million to Combat the COVID-19 Pandemic in Rural Tribal Communities

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HHS through HRSAGov awarded $15 million CARES Act funding to 52 Tribes, Tribal organizations, urban IndianHealth orgs, and other health services providers to Tribes across 20 states to prepare, prevent, and respond to Covid19 in rural communities.

“President Trump stands with Tribal nations across the country as they grapple with COVID-19 in rural communities,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “Today’s funding gives Tribes critical support to build up their capacity for fighting COVID-19, boost testing capabilities, increase purchases of PPE, and hire and pay the personnel they need.”

These awards are funded through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act that President Trump signed into law on Friday, March 27, 2020. HRSA made awards to Federally Recognized Tribes and other tribal organizations based on their needs and capacity to implement COVID-19 related activities in their rural communities. Tribes could request up to $300K in funding for these activities through the Rural Tribal COVID-19 Response program.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has hit many Tribal communities, particularly in rural areas, very hard,” said HRSA Administrator Tom Engels. “By directing new resources to these areas we are hoping to make a difference that will result in fewer new infections of this pernicious virus.” The RTCR program funding allows Tribes maximum flexibility in how they respond to COVID-19 within their communities.

 

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HRSAgov Rural communities experience a lot of challenges when it comes to health, and giving them support is an aid during this pandemic. For people with current heart conditions or what will be induced by COVID19 phoenix_cardio is something we should all look into and support

HRSAgov $15M is a start, but I suspect the many tribes and reservation health systems will need much more support. Many were underfunded even before the pandemic.

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