This newsletter contains updates on legislation, regulation and guidance on the federal and state levels in response to COVID-19. Please visit the Coronavirus Information section of the NAHU website for more resources.

Breaking News: President Trump signed four executive orders Saturday, including actions to defer payroll taxes for Americans earning less than $100,000 a year, implement a moratorium on evictions and give financial assistance to renters, add $400 per week in extra unemployment benefits through the end of 2020 (requiring states to cover 25% of the additional benefits) and postpone student loan interest and payments through the end of 2020. NAHU will be reviewing what these executive orders mean for you and your clients later this week on our Healthcare Happy Hour podcast. Tune in on August 14 to learn more!

The NAHU COVID-19 Relief Fund has been created to provide financial support to NAHU members and their families that have been most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Financial support could provide monetary assistance with out of pocket medical expenses, unanticipated funeral expenses, or other special circumstance COVID-19 related expenses for members in good standing and their legal dependents.
 
If you or fellow member has been impacted and you would like to apply for assistance, please click here. If you are in a position to make a contribution to help support your fellow NAHU member, we ask that you please donate here. These contributions are tax-deductible.


The NAHU COVID-19 Relief Fund has been created to provide financial support to NAHU members and their families that have been most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Financial support could provide monetary assistance with out of pocket medical expenses, unanticipated funeral expenses, or other special circumstance COVID-19 related expenses for members in good standing and their legal dependents.
 
If you or fellow member has been impacted and you would like to apply for assistance, please click here. If you are in a position to make a contribution to help support your fellow NAHU member, we ask that you please donate here. These contributions are tax-deductible.
 



Congress
  • After nine meetings over the past two weeks, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Secretary Mnuchin and White House Chief of Staff Meadows remain far apart on major issues, including the overall cost of the next coronavirus  legislative package, enhanced unemployment insurance, state and local funding, and liability protections. Last week’s meeting yielded little progress when Democrats offered to scale back their proposal by $1 trillion and requested that Republicans increase theirs by $1 trillion. Secretary Mnuchin called the move "a non-starter."
  • Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced that while the Senate will be in session this week, members can head home until a deal is reached on the next coronavirus relief package, at which point they will be given 24 hour notice to return to DC for a vote.
  • Senate Small Business Committee Chairman Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) filed two amendments to legislation that extends the deadline to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program.
  • Senators Kamala Harris (D-CA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Bob Menendez (D-NJ) introduced legislation to ensure minority communities are represented by the CARES oversight commission.
  • Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-ID) included more flexibility to take risks in emergency lending in an amendment to the economic relief legislation that is pending on the Senate floor.
  • Senators Tina Smith (D-MN) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) introduced the Improving Social Determinants of Health Act of 2020.
  • Senators Mark Warner (D-VA) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced legislation to reduce prescription drug costs for children while bringing in savings for states.
  • Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) introduced legislation to improve patient record matching among healthcare providers and strengthen the country’s COVID-19 response efforts.
  • Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Tina Smith (D-MN) introduced legislation to provide states with more resources to increase testing and provide faster results. It would also allow them to enter into interstate compacts to maximize efforts to eliminate the spread of COVID-19.
  • Senators Tina Smith (D-MN) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) introduced the Make Medications Affordable by Preventing Pandemic Price-gouging Act.
  • Senators Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Ed Markey (D-MA) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) introduced legislation that would create a 60 percent tax on wealth increases of billionaires during the pandemic to pay for all out-of-pocket medical expenses for all Americans.
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) penned a Dear Colleague letter regarding discussions with the Trump Administration over the urgently needed coronavirus relief bill.
Administration 
  • President Trump signed four executive orders Saturday, one of which will provide as much as $400 in enhanced unemployment benefits — 25% of which states are being asked to cover — after Democrats and the White House were unable to reach an agreement on a coronavirus stimulus relief bill this week.
  • President Trump issued an executive order titled “Ensuring Essential Medicines, Medical Countermeasures and Critical Inputs Are Made in the United States.”
  • President Trump signed an executive order improving rural health and telehealth access beyond the pandemic.
  • As part of the agency’s efforts to facilitate the nation’s response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, CMS announced a policy that will allow issuers to offer temporary premium reductions for individuals with 2020 coverage in the individual and small-group markets.
  • CMS is proposing changes to expand telehealth permanently, consistent with the executive order on Improving Rural and Telehealth Access that President Trump signed yesterday.
  • The Federal Reserve announced details of the FedNow Service, a new interbank settlement service to support instant payments in the United States, stating the need for this service has been highlighted by the pandemic.
States
  • The White House provided a readout from Vice President Pence's Governor's briefing on COVID-19 response and best practices.
  • Track where all 50 states stand on reopening.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released resources to assist states to reopen.
  • CMS has approved over 200 requests for state relief in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including recent approvals for Alaska, Iowa, Hawaii, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah and Virginia