Wuhan Coronavirus Resources for AZ
Washington, March 26, 2020
America faces an unprecedented crisis. This public health crisis has hit every state, every business and every family. Our country is on the edge, but we must be in this fight together. I know that Arizona and the United States will get through this difficult time together.
Many Arizona workers, families, and small businesses are facing waves of uncertainty and anxiety. As we overcome this difficult time together, my staff has compiled a list of resources to assist you. We will be updating this list every day with the latest information, especially as it relates to the stimulus package, and my office stands ready to assist any constituents with needs they may have.
Information and Resources for Combatting the Wuhan Coronavirus
For the latest information on how the Wuhan coronavirus please visit the Arizona Department of Health Services dedicated webpage. This site includes the number of cases by county, frequently asked questions, and more.
Governor Doug Ducey has also unveiled a one-stop website to make sifting through all the resources easier for Arizonans to get the information they need. Visit Arizonatogether.org.
For businesses impacted by the Wuhan coronavirus, please visit the Arizona Small Business Association’s dedicated website to provide you with resources.
Governor Doug Ducey has launched a new hotline to answer your questions. The hotline is operated everyday from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM by dialing 2-1-1. Additional information on the new hotline can be found here.
The Food and Drug Administration issued emergency approval for new commercial coronavirus tests to significantly expand testing across the country.
The President secured legislation that will ensure Americans are able to be tested for free and the Administration is working with state and local partners and the private sector to open up drive-through testing sites.
Banner Health, Arizona's largest health system, on Monday is launching drive-thru COVID-19 testing for prescreened patients at four sites, three in Phoenix and one in Tucson. Information on those sites can be found here.
In terms of vaccine and therapeutic development, New York announced that they will begin clinical trials using the drugs chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, and Zithromax to treat the virus. This comes after the FDA announced that they would evaluate existing drugs that could serve as potential therapeutics for coronavirus patients.
For information on unemployment insurance, visit the Arizona Department of Economic Security page on Unemployment Insurance Benefits.
Additional guidance is available from the U.S. Department of Labor page on recently announced guidance on unemployment insurance flexibilities during COVID-19 outbreak.
Under this new guidance, federal law allows states to pay benefits where:
An employer temporarily ceases operations due to COVID-19, preventing employees from coming to work; An individual is quarantined with the expectation of returning to work after the quarantine is over; An individual leaves employment due to a risk of exposure or infection or to care for a family member; In addition, federal law does not require an employee to quit in order to receive benefits due to the impact of COVID-19.
Arizona Employers with Immediate Job Openings
ARIZONA@WORK is the statewide workforce development network that helps employers of all sizes and types recruit, develop and retain the best employees for their needs. They have a dedicated website providing immediate job openings.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has implemented an aggressive public health response to protect and care for Veterans in the face of this emerging health risk. We are working directly with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other federal partners to monitor the outbreak of the virus.
Veterans with questions related to the coronavirus should visit: www.va.gov/coronavirus.
With Arizona schools closed, ABC15 has compiled a list of daycare, learning, and food resources for families. These resources can be found here.
The safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas is a top priority for the Department of State. Below are several resources to help answer questions you may have regard traveling during this time:
Questions regarding repatriation can be directed to CoronaVirusCongressionalUSC@state.gov
For the most up-to-date overseas travel advisories from the Department of State, please visit https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/traveladvisories.html
The Department of State encourages U.S. citizens traveling overseas to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment (STEP) to receive important messages about their destination: https://step.state.gov/step
For CDC’s latest coronavirus related information for travelers, please see: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html
The U.S. Treasury Department has announced that individuals and corporations can delay their tax payments for 90 days due to the coronavirus pandemic. Individuals can defer up to $1 million in payments for 90 days from the April 15 deadline. Guidance on delaying tax payments can be found here.
Visit the Internal Revenue Service page for additional resources on Coronavirus Tax Relief.
FEMA has created a webpage to help the public distinguish between rumors and facts regarding the response to coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Rumors can easily circulate within communities during a crisis, stay informed with our updated myth vs. facts related to the federal (COVID-19) response. Visit the website here: www.fema.gov/coronavirus-rumor-control
Scammers are taking advantage of American’s concerns over the coronavirus. The Federal Trade Commission has compiled some tips to help keep these scammers at bay. Visit the FTC’s coronavirus page here: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/coronavirus-scams-what-ftc-doing.
There are several steps you can take to avoid potential coronavirus scams. This article details what you need to know. NOTE: You can NOT purchase a cure to the coronavirus.
Additional Agency Response
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service: CMS has released Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on Medicare provider enrollment relief related to COVID-19. The FAQs include information on toll-free hotlines available to allow physicians and non-physician practitioners to enroll and receive temporary Medicare billing privileges. The hotlines should also be used if providers and suppliers have questions regarding provider enrollment flexibilities afforded by CMS waivers made under section 1135 of the Social Security Act, and can be used for physicians and non-physician practitioners to report a change in practice location. The FAQs can be found here: www.cms.gov/files/document/provider-enrollment-relief-faqs-covid-19.pdf.
Department of Defense: The Defense Department is working closely with the Department of Health and Human Services and State Department to provide support in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak. More information: https://www.defense.gov/Explore/Spotlight/Coronavirus/
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): The EPA is actively monitoring risks to drinking water and wastewater for waterborne pathogens and coordinating with the CDC to provide technical assistance. At this time, there is no evidence of coronavirus presence in drinking water. Americans can continue to use and drink water from their taps as usual. More Information: https://www.epa.gov/coronavirus
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA): On March 13, 2020, FMCSA issued an emergency declaration to provide hours-of-service regulatory relief for those transporting relief items (medical supplies and equipment, masks, gloves, sanitizer, soap, food, housing and quarantine facility supplies, emergency service personnel). Drivers must still receive off duty breaks. FMCSA requires a minimum of 10 hours off duty if transporting freight and 8 hours if transporting passengers. More Information: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/newsroom/us-department-transportation-expands-national-emergency-declaration-commercial-vehicles
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA): On March 12, 2020, as a joint effort with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), FAA the issued a Safety Alert for Operators recommending precautions for air crewmembers to reduce the risk of transmission of the virus onboard aircraft or through air travel.
FAA is providing relief for airlines by temporarily waiving airport slot rules. Generally, airlines that hold slots at slot-controlled airports such as JFK, LGA, and DCA, must use their slot 80 percent of the time or else they forfeit their slot. Given the tremendous drop in air traffic, FAA is currently waiving application of the “use-or-lose” rule for the time being so that carriers do not have to fly “ghost flights.” More Information: https://www.faa.gov/news/updates/?newsId=94991.