As Congress continues to stall on COVID-19 response funding, the Biden administration issued another statement on the “severe consequences” that could result from the delay in coming to a consensus on the issue.
In its April 27 statement, the White House highlighted how initial funding provided by Congress over the past 15 months allowed the US to make “tremendous progress” in battling COVID-19. According to the release, the funding:
- Averted $900 billion in health care costs
- Allowed people to return to regular routines by “creating jobs at a record pace”
- Saved more than 2 million lives in the US
Continued funding will be essential to continued progress on controlling and fighting COVID-19 and executing President Biden’s National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan as well as being ready for the next pandemic, the White House statement says.
In particular, if Congress doesn’t come to a decision on adequate COVID-19 relief funding soon, that will mean fewer tests and treatments for Americans to control and manage the disease, as well as fewer vaccines for the rest of the world to help prevent the emergence of new, potentially more lethal, variants from emerging, the statement adds.
“COVID-19 isn’t waiting on Congress to negotiate. Other countries will not wait. Time is of the essence,” the release urges. “Congress must act urgently to help save more American lives and ensure we remain prepared.”
Though it initially looked like lawmakers had reached an agreement on April 4, things have devolved into a fight over politics, and the COVID-19 funding package remains in limbo.
Learn more in the May 2022 issue of National Lab Reporter.