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State and Federal Overview: the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), September 8, 2020

Federal Government
U.S. Cases - Provided by the New York Times
As of 4:30 PM on September 7th, 2020:

Total Cases:
 6.3 million+
Deaths: 188,983

Includes confirmed and probable cases where available.
COVID-19 Economic Support
Economic Impact Payments:
Where did Economic Impact Payments come from?
On March 27, 2020, an emergency stimulus package was signed into law to provide financial relief to qualified individuals impacted by COVID-19. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes a key provision, the Economic Impact Payments, that will be issued by the Internal Revenue System (IRS) to provide financial relief to many Americans. If you’re curious about learning more about the history of Economic Impact Payments, visit the IRS Economic Impact Payment Information Center.
Who is eligible for Economic Impact Payments and how is the payment amount determined?
Eligibility for Economic Impact Payments is determined as follows:
  • Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples and up to $500 for each qualifying child.
  • Tax filers with adjusted gross income, up to $75,000 for individuals and up to $150,000 for married couples filing a joint return, will receive the full payment.
  • For filers with income above those amounts, the payment amount is reduced by $5 for each $100 above the $75,000 and $150,000 thresholds.
  • Social Security recipients and railroad retirees, who are otherwise not required to file a tax return, are also eligible and will not be required to file a return.
Single filers with income exceeding $99,000 and $198,000 for joint filers with no children are not eligible.
What do I need to do to receive my Economic Impact Payment?
Economic Impact Payments will be distributed automatically with no action required for most people. However, some taxpayers who typically do not file returns will need to submit a simple tax return to receive the Economic Impact Payment.
Use the IRS’s Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool to provide basic information to confirm your eligibility and get your payment.
You should use this application if you meet all these requirements:
  • Are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • Had gross income that did not exceed $12,200 ($24,400 for married couples) for 2019.
  • Did not file a return for 2018 or 2019 and were not otherwise required to file a federal income tax return for 2019.
  • Do not receive Social Security retirement, disability (SSDI).
  • Do not receive survivor benefits.
  • Do not receive supplemental security income (SSI).
  • Do not receive Railroad Retirement benefits.
  • Do not receive Veterans Affairs Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefits.
How will I receive my Economic Impact Payment?
Economic Impact Payments will be sent electronically directly to a bank account or sent in the mail by paper check or prepaid debit card (EIP Card). To view the status of your payment, use the IRS’s Get My Payment application.
What is an EIP Card?
The EIP Card is a prepaid debit card that contains the money you are receiving as a result of the CARES Act. Your EIP Card will be mailed to you at the most recent mailing address filed with the IRS. For more information on EIP Cards, including activation instructions and FAQs, visit You can also read the U.S. Department of the Treasury's helpful article on EIP Cards.
Additional Resources on Economic Impact Payments
To learn more about Economic Impact Payments, visit the IRS’s Economic Impact Payment Information Center, for answers to questions on the process of obtaining your payment. If you are a Social Security recipient, read the U.S. Social Security Administration’s guide for receiving your payment.
Read the full release and learn more on
Department of Health and Human Services
Trump Administration Announces $2 Billion Provider Relief Fund Nursing Home Incentive Payment Plans. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is announcing the details of a $2 billion Provider Relief Fund (PRF) performance-based incentive payment distribution to nursing homes. This distribution is the latest update in the previously announced $5 billion in planned support to nursing homes grappling with the impact of COVID-19. Last week, HHS announced it had delivered an additional $2.5 billion in payments to nursing homes to help with upfront COVID-19-related expenses for testing, staffing, and personal protective equipment (PPE) needs. Other resources are also being dedicated to support training, mentorship and safety improvements in nursing homes.
Nursing homes have been particularly hard hit by this pandemic. By tying continued relief payments to patient outcomes, the Trump Administration is demonstrating its commitment to preserving the lives and safety of America's seniors, who are especially vulnerable to COVID-19. Nursing homes will not have to apply to receive a share of this $2 billion incentive payment allocation; HHS will be measuring nursing home performance through required nursing home data submissions and distributing payments based on these data.
Qualifications. In order to qualify for payments under the incentive program, a facility must have an active state certification as a nursing home or skilled nursing facility (SNF) and receive reimbursement from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). HHS will administer quality checks on nursing home certification status through the Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System (PECOS) to identify and remove facilities that have a terminated, expired, or revoked certification or enrollment. Facilities must also report to at least one of three data sources that will be used to establish eligibility and collect necessary provider data to inform payment: Certification and Survey Provider Enhanced Reports (CASPER), Nursing Home Compare (NHC), and Provider of Services (POS).
Performance and Payment Cycle. The incentive payment program is scheduled to be divided into four performance periods (September, October, November, December), lasting a month each with $500 million available to nursing homes in each period. All nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities meeting the previously noted qualifications will be eligible for each of the four performance periods. Nursing homes will be assessed based on a full month's worth of the aforementioned data submissions, which will then undergo additional HHS scrutiny and auditing before payments are issued the following month, after the prior month's performance period.
Methodology. Using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HHS will measure nursing homes against a baseline level of infection in the community where a given facility is located. CDC's Community Profile Reports (CPRs) include county-level information on total confirmed and/or suspected COVID-19 infections per capita, as well as information on COVID-19 test positivity. Against this baseline, facilities will have their performance measured on two outcomes:
  1. Ability to keep new COVID infection rates low among residents.
  2. Ability to keep COVID mortality low among residents. 
To measure facility COVID-19 infection and mortality rates, the incentive program will utilize data from the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) LTCF COVID-19 module. CMS issued guidance in early May requiring that certified nursing facilities submit data to the NHSN COVID-19 Module.  Data from this module will be used to assess nursing home performance and determine incentive payments.
Trump Administration Announces Provider Relief Fund Application for Assisted Living Facilities. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is announcing assisted living facilities (ALFs) may now apply for funding under the Provider Relief Fund Phase 2 General Distribution allocation.
Through its ongoing efforts to support providers in need, HHS is inviting ALFs that may have been previously ineligible to apply for Phase 2 General Distribution funding. ALFs support older adults and people with disabilities with a wide range of assistance for activities of daily living. Nearly 1 million older adults live in an estimated 28,000 assisted living facilities across the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ALFs and the population they serve are particularly vulnerable to the spread and impact of COVID-19. To combat this risk and better protect their residents, many ALFs have implemented CDC recommendations that have resulted in increased health care related costs to their facilities. HHS is encouraging ALFs to apply for funding to help minimize the financial hardships of these increased expenses caused by COVID-19.
Like other providers applying for Phase 2 funding, eligible ALFs will receive 2 percent of their annual revenue from patient care. Helpful information for these providers can be found at the Provider Relief Fund website, which includes previously recorded Phase 2 application webinars, frequently asked questions (FAQs) and other information on how to apply through the recently simplified application process. Assisted living facilities, like all providers applying for the current Phase 2 General Distribution funding will have until September 13, 2020 to begin their application by entering their Tax Identification Number (TIN) for validation.
For updated information and data on the Provider Relief Fund, visit:
Food and Drug Administration
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continued to take action in the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
  • The FDA issued an updated FDA COVID-19 Response At-A-Glance Summary that provides a quick look at facts, figures, and highlights of the agency's response efforts.
  • The FDA’s COVID-19-related consumer updates are now available in at least five languages.
  • Testing updates:
    • To date, the FDA has currently authorized 242 tests under EUAs; these include 194 molecular tests, 44 antibody tests, and 4 antigen tests.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Hydroxychloroquine and Chloroquine Prescribing Patterns by Provider Specialty Following Initial Reports of Potential Benefit for COVID-19 Treatment — United States, January–June 2020: Summary
What is already known about this topic? Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are approved to treat autoimmune diseases and to prevent and treat malaria. Earlier this year, they were widely reported to be of potential benefit in the prevention and treatment of COVID-19; however, current data indicate that the potential benefits of these drugs do not outweigh their risks.
What is added by the report? New prescriptions by specialists who did not typically prescribe these medications (defined as specialties accounting for ≤2% of new prescriptions before 2020) increased from 1,143 prescriptions in February 2020 to 75,569 in March 2020, an 80-fold increase from March 2019.
What are the implications for public health practice? Attention to updated clinical guidance, especially by nonroutine prescribers, will help safeguard supplies and ensure safe use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for patients with approved indications.
Read the report.
Department of Housing and Urban Development
HUD Urges Localities to Prevent Evictions by Using Grant Funds. Consistent with President Trump’s Executive Order “Fighting the Spread of COVID-19 by Providing Assistance to Renters and Homeowners”, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has reiterated the Trump Administration’s commitment to minimize displacement and evictions resulting from the COVID-19 global pandemic national emergency. HUD is reminding all grantees-states, cities, communities, and nonprofits-who received Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) or Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds that they may use these funds to provide rental assistance or other aid to individuals experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic and are at risk of being evicted, consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and guidance.
HUD continues to provide technical assistance to grant recipients to prevent evictions and keep people in their homes throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the Department provided virtual office hours for grantees to ensure relief funds are being used quickly and efficiently. HUD has issued a toolkit for landlords and Public Housing Authorities so they can work with their tenants during this difficult financial time. Additionally, HUD has extended its Single-Family eviction and foreclosure moratorium for FHA insured Single-Family homes three times, has promoted the Department’s Housing Counselor services, and issued guidance for lenders.
Homelessness service providers and Public Housing Authorities across the Nation have jumped into action to assist those they serve during this unprecedented time. Read more about their stories featured in HUD's Neighbors Helping Neighbors campaign, here. For more information on HUD's response to the novel coronavirus pandemic and the actions the Department has taken, please visit
Bureau of Labor Statistics
The Employment Situation — August 2020. Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.4 million in August, and the unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. These improvements in the labor market reflect the continued resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain it. In August, an increase in government employment largely reflected temporary hiring for the 2020 Census. Notable job gains also occurred in retail trade, in professional and business services, in leisure and hospitality, and in education and health services.

Read the release.
Department of Labor
ICYMI: U.S. Department of Labor Acts to Help American Workers and Employers During the Coronavirus Pandemic. Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor took a range of actions to aid American workers and employers as our nation combats the coronavirus pandemic.
Reopening America’s Economy:
Defending Workers’ Rights to Paid Leave and Wages Earned:
  • U.S. Department of Labor Offers Webinar for Ohio Employers – The Wage and Hour Division and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration presented a webinar for Ohio area employers and human resources professionals on the paid leave requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and safety guidance for returning to work and maintaining a safe and healthy working environment.
The State of Texas
Health Care
Department of State Health Services
COVID-19 Case Count. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in responding to the new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‑19) that is causing an outbreak of respiratory illness worldwide. State case counts can be found by accessing the DSHS COVID-19 Dashboard.

Three older confirmed case were included in the statewide total but excluded from statewide and Dallas county new confirmed cases (244). Details can be found here:
DSHS: Flu & COVID-19. With both flu and COVID-19 circulating this season, getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever. Learn more about what you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones on the CDC website:
Health and Human Services Commission
GL 20-0003-A Hurricane Preparedness During the COVID-19 Disaster (Amended). GL 20-0003-A related to preparing for hurricane season during the COVID-19 disaster has been posted. This letter provides hurricane preparedness guidance, recommendations and resources to regulated health care facilities and licensed professionals during the COVID-19 disaster. The amended letter also outlines HHSC notification requirements when a facility reopens following a disaster. 

Please read the letter at the below link and if you have questions, please contact

Read the letter.
September 3 Recording of ALF Provider COVID-19 Webinar with LTCR Available.A recording of the September 3, 2020, ALF Provider COVID-19 Webinar with LTCR is available for those unable to attend.

View the webinar recording here.
View the webinar slide presentation.
September 3 Recording of LTCR COVID-19 Updates for HCS and TxHmL Providers Webinar Available. A recording of the September 3, 2020, HCS and TxHmL Provider Responsibilities: Death Notifications and Provider Investigation Reports Webinar with WSC LTCR is available for those unable to attend.

View the webinar recording here.
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