HENRICO, V.A. – U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today announced a federal grant totaling $2,648,079 for Virginia hospitals to purchase additional medical equipment and support preparedness planning.
The award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will be dispersed through HHS’s Hospital Preparedness Program to the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) for COVID-19 preparedness and response activities under the Virginia Healthcare Emergency Management Program (VHEMP). In March 2020, Spanberger voted in support of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided millions in additional funding for HHS’s Hospital Preparedness Program.
“With Virginia gradually reopening, we must take strong, targeted steps to keep our healthcare workers safe, deliver quality care to Virginia patients, and prepare for future outbreaks of COVID-19. This much-needed funding from HHS is another step toward strengthening the Commonwealth’s response and preparing our healthcare providers for the weeks and months ahead,” said Spanberger. “I’d like to thank the VHHA and its members for working around the clock to prepare our healthcare facilities for the challenges that may arise due to COVID-19, and I’ll keep fighting for the resources our communities need to weather this pandemic together.”
“Virginia hospitals and health systems play a critical role in planning for and responding to public health emergencies in the Commonwealth. This has never been more clear as hospitals and their dedicated teams have been on the frontlines during the COVID-19 pandemic, and hospital leaders have been actively engaged in coordinating response strategies alongside state and federal partners,” said Sean T. Connaughton, President and CEO, Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association. “VHHA and its members are an integral part of the Commonwealth’s emergency preparedness infrastructure, and this enhanced Assistant Secretary for Preparedness Response funding provides continued support for that important work. We are grateful to Virginia’s congressional delegation for their efforts to support health care providers and public health emergency planning efforts.”
VHEMP — a partnership between the Virginia Department of Health and the VHHA —aims to address and close gaps in the Virginia healthcare system’s ability to plan and respond to natural and manmade disasters. Through an established network of six healthcare coalitions, VHEMP works with Virginia healthcare facilities and response organizations to identify and address gaps in healthcare preparedness and response in their local area.