Today, Vice President Mike Pence led a discussion with the chief executives of approximately 50 States, territories, and Washington, DC, and their state emergency managers and health officials to provide an update on the all-of-America approach to respond to and mitigate the effects of COVID-19.
The Vice President, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor, CMS, Administrator Seema Verma, and Rear Adm. John Polowczyk with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and all 10 FEMA Regional Administrators urged State, local, and tribal leaders to regularly highlight community mitigation efforts to “Slow the Spread” through April 30. Participants also discussed the Federal government’s historic efforts to support State, local, and tribal leaders including, already approving 45 major disaster declaration requests and 31 Title 32 requests related to COVID-19 response efforts. The importance of the $150 billion of CARES Act funding for states to effectively respond to COVID-19 was discussed. Participants also discussed the significant financial support from CARES Act funding for hospitals and Americans impacted by COVID-19.
Participants discussed the Federal governments supply chain support which is supplementing efforts of the commercial supply chain to get critical supplies directly to the healthcare providers, states ensuring the availability of a strong and resilient healthcare workforce by cutting licensing red tape and expanding telehealth options, and the importance for state leaders to utilize all testing resources from commercial labs, hospital and research labs, and public labs to increase testing capacity, reduce backlogs and eliminate unnecessary delays. Federal leaders applauded the actions of Oregon and Washington help roll resources over time across the nation by donating ventilators to help other states meet current needs.
The leadership of governors, mayors, county commissioners, and tribal officials is vital for effective emergency management. Emergency management in America is locally-executed, State-managed, and Federally supported, which allows for innovative solutions to be identified at the local and State level for the majority of issues. Since January 2020, the Trump Administration has held nearly 117 briefings – including 11 governors briefings – with over 56,000 State, local, and tribal leaders in every State and territory in the Nation. Leaders at every level of government and the private sector are working in partnership to bend the curve.