President Trump has been laser focused on addressing the COVID-19 Coronavirus and protecting the health and safety of Americans from the start. Additionally, Congress is monitoring this closely, and we continue to receive regular updates and briefings from all the relevant public health officials.
On March 6, President Trump signed the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act into law. The bill provided $8.3 billion in emergency supplemental appropriations for federal, state, and local responses to the Coronavirus.
H.R. 6201 – the second Coronavirus bill – was signed into law by President Trump on Wednesday, March 18th. This bill requires free access to coronavirus testing, ensuring there are no cost barriers to these tests. It also included $1.2 billion to help cover the costs of testing, including $142 million to directly help our service members and veterans.
The CARES Act – the third Coronavirus bill – unanimously passed the Senate. This package will provide further assistance to our economy, including direct relief payments to most American taxpayers. Click here for the full text of the CARES Act.
On February 11, 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak, first identified in Wuhan China. The new name of this disease is coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19. In COVID-19, ‘CO’ stands for ‘corona,’ ‘VI’ for ‘virus,’ and ‘D’ for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as “2019 novel coronavirus” or “2019-nCoV”.
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases such as the Coronavirus, including:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
The Louisiana Department of Health continues to closely monitor this outbreak and shares twice-daily updated case numbers online.
Testing and Supplies:
Ochsner Health has designated three urgent care centers to serve individuals in Southeast Louisiana experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. The following Ochsner Urgent Care Centers are now designated for COVID-19 assessment and testing, if recommended by the Louisiana Department of Health and the patient’s provider.
- Bayou Region
Ochsner Urgent Care – Houma
5922 W. Main St., Suite A
Houma, LA 70360
Ochsner Urgent Care – Mandeville
2735 US-190, Suite D
Mandeville, LA 70471
- New Orleans
Ochsner Urgent Care – Mid-City at Canal
4100 Canal St, New Orleans
New Orleans, LA 70119
Three new drive-through COVID-19 “Community-Based Testing Sites” made available by the Trump Administration’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Greater New Orleans area. The sites will initially focus on testing health care workers and first responders. Beginning Sunday, March 22, the testing locations will be available to any symptomatic individual, with a cap of 100 tests per day, per site. The sites will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., daily. Please click the links below for more information on each testing location.
- Mahalia Jackson Theater Parking Lot
1419 Basin Street, New Orleans, LA 70116
- University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena Parking Lot
2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70148
- Alario Center
2000 Segnette Blvd, Westwego, LA 70094
- Louisiana small businesses experiencing a temporary loss of revenue due to Coronavirus are now eligible for low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Administration (SBA). You can apply online here.
- For additional questions, you can contact the SBA at (800) 659-2955, or the New Orleans regional SBA office at (504) 589-6685.
- Click here for an overview of the resources available to small businesses.
For Parents and Students:
- The Louisiana Department of Education has several resources for families, including a list of school meal sites and a toolkit to support learning at home, as well as the most accurate information and guidance for schools and learning centers.
- The U.S. Department of Education has several resources for elementary and secondary schools.
- The U.S. Department of Education has also released new information clarifying that federal law should not be used to prevent schools from offering distance learning opportunities to all students, including students with disabilities.
- The National Association for the Education of Young Children has several online resources to assist with the significant impacts COVID-19 s is likely to have on child care and early learning programs, including educators, families, and children.
- Interim Guidance for Administrators of U.S. Childcare Programs and K-12 Schools
- Resources for Institutes of Higher Education
- Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection Recommendations – Community Facilities
- Smithsonian Institution Digital Resources for Students
- Library of Congress Digital Resources for Students
- Department of Homeland Security’s Ready.gov
- CDC Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
- National Institutes of Health
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration
- Disinfectants for use against Coronavirus
- CDC Travel Health Notices
- Federal Government Response to Coronavirus
- FAQ: Coronavirus Legislation
Tax Filing and Payment Deadline Extended:
- The IRS deadline for filing taxes has moved from April 15 to July 15 due to the disruption caused by the coronavirus. All taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time to file and make payments without interest or penalties.
- The IRS has established a special website focused on steps to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus.