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Americans for Prosperity Urges Swift and Targeted Action on Coronavirus

Mar 13, 2020 by AFP

Arlington, VA –Americans for Prosperity urges swift and targeted action to address the legitimate public safety and economic challenges associated with the coronavirus pandemic. Lawmakers, both in Congress and in state capitols across the country, should act to ensure that high-risk populations have access to proper testing and treatment, that accurate information is shared with the public so that people can make good health decisions, and that regulatory barriers that reduce access to affordable, quality care are cleared.

 

CEO of Americans for Prosperity Emily Seidel issued the following statement:

“Our organization has the privilege of working every day with the friends, neighbors, and families in communities across the country who embody the strength and resilience of America – personal connection is at the heart of what we do. In hard times, communities come together to help each other in incredible ways that transcend our differences and inspire us to do more.

“The spread of coronavirus is a concern that public officials are right to take seriously. As lawmakers move ahead with legislation to provide relief to those who are impacted, we urge them to advance solutions that are timely, targeted, and temporary. They should prioritize policies that expand access and supply of testing and care, leverage advances in technology and innovation, and ensure the safety net is there for those who need it.

“We should focus on removing existing government barriers, increasing flexibility in current systems, and expediting the development and approval of potential treatments. Telemedicine is already transforming the screening and treatment process. Technology is allowing students to continue learning outside the classroom.  These are the kinds of innovative approaches that will address the current challenge and leave us stronger in the long term.

“But lawmakers and citizens alike should be cautious.  If history has taught us anything it’s that crises are often exploited by special interests for their own gain or to advance partisan political agendas.  This should not and cannot be tolerated now.  Our energy and resources should be focused on getting help to those who need it the most. The policies put in place today should be grounded in effectiveness, not politics. They should help address our current challenges, but not leave us weaker when the crisis has passed.”

 

As a part of an effective policy response, Americans for Prosperity calls on:

  • The Administration, Congress and The Center for Disease Control to ensure that adequate testing supplies are available, training is offered around testing protocol, and available technologies are used to ensure the public remains informed of risks in their communities.

 

  • Congress, state legislatures and relevant agencies to expand access to telemedicine through changes in both state and federal regulation, allowing Medicare and Medicaid populations greater access to the technology, and removing restrictions, such as requirements for initial in-person consultation, that reduce the effectiveness of the tool.

 

  • Congress to ensure that aid goes to individuals with identified financial hardship resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, that assistance is provided on a temporary basis until the health crisis abates, and that this crisis not be used to provide a windfall to well-connected special interests for programs unrelated to the harms caused by the coronavirus.

 

  • State legislatures and relevant agencies to remove restrictions that prevent out-of-state physicians and nurses from providing life-saving care, to increase the scope of authority for advanced practice nurses to increase access to care, and to reduce Certificate of Need restrictions that negatively impact the supply of qualified medical care.