President Trump Declares Coronavirus a National Emergency
President Trump is “officially declaring a national emergency” with respect to the coronavirus.
Declaration of a national emergency will authorize “the importation free of duty of food, clothing, and medical, surgical, and other supplies for use in emergency relief work” as well as entitles the U.S. government “to use, control, or possess, without charge, any part of the public airport at which the property is located”.
Additionally, the President says the government will waive provisions and laws enabling tele-health services like remote doctors, removing the limit on the number of beds in hospitals, allowing for additional physicians to be staffed, and removing requirements where hospitals can care for patients within the hospital itself.
President Trump says they are also “working on a solution to dramatically increase the availability of tests” to detect the coronavirus, and they expect “up to half a million additional tests will be available next week” and “5 million in a month”.
There are currently no approved diagnostics, vaccines or treatments for the coronavirus. However, the FDA is “authorizing certain laboratories in New York to begin patient testing” through an Emergency Use Authorization.
As of noon Eastern, there have been 1,629 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the U.S. with 41 deaths. Global confirmed cases is up to 132,536 with 4,947 deaths.