The following is a media release from Sen. Ed Markey and Sen Elizabeth Warren’s offices. Both were elected by voters in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to serve the state in Washington DC in the US Senate. Both are Democrats.
BOSTON – nited States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) yesterday, March 5, announced that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has awarded $500,000 in initial funding to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to support efforts to address a potential outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
This initial funding comes in advance of a Senate vote on a $7.8 billion appropriations package that would provide additional emergency funding to Massachusetts and other jurisdictions.
“The coronavirus outbreak is a public health emergency and requires an all-hands-on-deck response,” said Senator Warren. “While I am pleased that the federal government has awarded this much-needed funding to the Commonwealth, we must act quickly to provide communities with the resources they need to confront this potential pandemic and minimize the economic impact this crisis could have on our families. I’ll keep fighting to make sure our federal government has an effective response to this crisis.”
“Responding to the coronavirus emergency will take leadership and resources at the federal, state, and local level,” said Senator Markey. “This federal funding for Massachusetts communities will help them confront this growing threat and help address the harm it could have on their economies, and public health and safety. There is much more to be done to support our response to the coronavirus crisis, and I will continue to fight to protect our families and our communities.”
The funding awarded to Massachusetts is part of an initial $25 million cooperative agreement to the states and local jurisdictions who have borne the largest burden of response and preparedness activities to date. This initial award will provide assistance for activities such as monitoring of travelers, data management, lab equipment, supplies, staffing, shipping, infection control, and surge staffing.
Massachusetts now has 8 cases of the coronavirus and more than 700 individuals in quarantine.
Although the risk to Massachusetts residents of the novel coronavirus is low, the risk for influenza is currently high. Many of the things you do to help prevent colds and the flu can help protect you against other respiratory viruses:
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Clean things that are frequently touched (like doorknobs and countertops) with household cleaning spray or wipes.
- Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use a tissue or your inner elbow, not your hands.
- Stay home if you are sick and avoid close contact with others.