Coronavirus Flash Update: July 2020 #1

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Alston & Bird’s Coronavirus Flash provides updates on policy and regulatory actions under consideration across many important industries being monitored by our teams. Links to key government and legal resources are provided throughout the report.


UPDATED 9:00 AM ET ON MONDAY, JULY 6, 2020

The Latest News

  • U.S. COVID-19 cases exceed 2,879,697 and 127,422 U.S. deaths. (Source: CDC) (Updated 7/6/20)
  • U.S. stock market: On Thursday the markets were up for the day, with the Dow rising 92 points, the S&P 500 gaining 14 points, and the Nasdaq adding 53 points. The markets were closed Friday in observance of Independence Day. (New)
  • HHS announced last week an agreement to obtain large supplies of the drug Remdesivir for use in the United States through Gilead Sciences to aid hospitals and state health departments to purchase the drug as allocated by HHS. This agreement secures 500,000 treatment courses of Remdesivir for hospitals, and their payments will be limited to no more than $3,200 per average treatment course at $390 per vial. (6/29/20) (New)
    • To qualify for purchases hospitals must submit data on their COVID-19 patients through the TeleTracking web portal by Monday at 8:00pm every two weeks starting on Monday, July 6 (today). (New)
  • On Saturday, July 4, the President signed into law 4116 which reauthorizes the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through August 8. This extends the PPP loan assistance for small businesses which had been set to expire on June 30 for another 6 weeks. The bill passed both chambers last week with bipartisan support. (New)
  • Several business groups urge the President and the National Governor’s Association to issue stronger guidance on face masks. The letter was signed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Retail Federation, the National Association of Manufacturers, the American Council of Life Insurers, the Business Roundtable, and several others. (7/2/20) (New)

COVID-19 Federal & State Legislation

  • Bill 4.0: The House voted early last week to approve, by a vote of 234-179, an amended version of the Patient Protection and Affordability Enhancement Act, H.R. 1425, which seeks to bolster certain health coverage and affordability provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Energy and Commerce Committee has posted a one page summary, section-by-section, and the text. The Senate GOP leadership does not plan to move forward on the House passed measure.
  • Last Wednesday, the House passed the Invest Act, H.R. 2, a $1.5 trillion infrastructure investment package. While the vote was largely along party lines at 233-188, the Senate is expected to move forward on some version of the Invest Act when they return later this month.
  • The HEROES Act was the first formal offer on a new emergency stimulus bill, 4.0: For the full details on the HEROES Act, H.R. 6800, which passed the House on May 15:
  • The Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act, H.R. 7010, was enacted on June 5. To learn more, see this A&B Summary of the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act. (6/5/20)
  • Bill 3.5: Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, (R. 266) was enacted on April 24. Also available are a section-by-section summary and an overview of the health care provisions.
  • A&B detailed summaries are below:
    • A&B Summary5 Small Business Provisions
    • A&B Summary5 Health Care Enhancement Provisions
  • Bill 3.0: Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, (R. 748) passed on March 27. A congressional section by section summary is available here.
  • Congress has passed three coronavirus emergency response bills and the first two are below:
  • Bill 1.0: Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental (CPPRS) (R. 6074) passed on March 5
  • Bill 2.0: Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) (R. 6201) passed on March 18

Transition to “Reopening”

Department of Health and Human Services

  • HHS has a tracking feature that allows public viewing of all COVID-19 HHS grants and cooperative agreement awards on its website. The grants were distributed through programs in the ACF, ACL, ASPR, CDC, DHHS/OS, HRSA, IHS, NIH, and SAMHSA. (Updated 7/1/20)
  • The HHS Agency for Health Resources and Quality (AHRQ) released a blog on next steps for expanding telehealth and telementoring during COVID-19. (7/1/20) (New)
  • The HHS Office of Civil Rights maintains a list of COVID-19 complaint resolutions. (Updated 7/2/20)
  • The HHS Indian Health Service announced the expansion of the Community Health Aide Program which provides education and training for tribal community health providers in the delivery of public health services. (7/2/20) (New)
  • The HHS Office of Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) has announced they are expanding their partnership with Sonica Health to develop an early warning COVID-19 patch. (7/1/20) (New)
  • HHS announced it is extending its partnership with national pharmacy and grocery retail chains CVS, Rite-Aid, Walgreens, Quest (through services at Walmart) and eTrueNorth (through services at Kroger, Health Mart, and Walmart) to provide COVID-19 testing. (6/30/20) (New)
  • HHS, as authorized by the CARES Act, has re-established the Ready Reserve Corps to provide trained and ready personnel to fill critical public health needs. (6/30/20) (New)
  • The HHS Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, jointly with CMS, released a mental health and substance use disorders resource guide on insurance coverage during the COVID-19 pandemic. (6/29/20) (New)
  • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) posted a discussion on Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) between NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins and Dr. Bruce Tromberg, Director of the National Institute of Bioimaging and Bioengineering. (6/25/20)

HHS/CDC/CMS/HRSA CARES Act Provider Relief Funds

  • HHS - the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund (PRF) webpage and portal (Updated 7/1/20)
  • And the PRF FAQs (Updated 6/30/20) have been updated and capture numerous modifications.
  • HHS announced three new Provider Relief Fund allotments completing the initial $100 billion authorized by the CARES Act: the three allotments are safety net hospitals, second round funding for hot spot providers, and Medicaid and CHIP providers. (6/9/20)
  • The CDC has posted an updated dataset of provider recipient specific payment from the Provider Relief Fund general distribution high impact targeted allocation and/or rural targeted allocation. The dataset includes who has attested to receiving one or more payments and agreed to the terms and conditions as of July 1. (Updated 7/2/20)
  • HHS posted a resource on Provider Relief Fund disbursements to serve as summary of the key details. The CARES Act Provider Relief Fund hotline is (866) 569-3522. (6/18/20)
  • A&B Hospital Provisions from all 4 bills tracker (Updated 7/5/20)
  • A&B Provider Relief Fund Disbursement tracker (Updated 7/5/20)
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

Food and Drug Administration

Small Business Administration

  • Small Business Administration (SBA) announced it had reopened the Economic Injury Disaster Loan and the Advance Program to small businesses and nonprofits. (6/15/20)
  • The President signed into law 4116 which reauthorizes the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through August 8. This extends the PPP loan assistance for small businesses which had been set to expire on June 30 for another 6 weeks. (7/4/20) (New)
  • The SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP):
  • A PPP guidance on how to calculate maximum loan amounts has been posted. (6/26/20)
  • The SBA has released an interim final rule on certain eligible payroll costs. (6/25/20)
  • The PPP FAQs have been updated. (6/25/20)

Other Federal Agencies

For background and the most up-to-date information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Coronavirus Disease 2019 website: HERE. The additional federal agency links are provided by the White House Coronavirus Task Force: What You Should Know:

Information for Businesses:

Information for Travel and Transportation:

Download PDF of the Flash Update

[View source.]

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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