WASHINGTON (AP) — Speaker Nancy Pelosi says deal reached with Trump administration on emergency aid package for coronavirus.
On Friday afternoon, Pres. Donald Trump declared the coronavirus pandemic a national emergency. Speaking from the Rose Garden, Trump said the emergency would open up nearly $50 billion for state and local governments to respond to the outbreak.
Trump said he was also giving Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar emergency authorities to waive federal regulations and laws to give doctors and hospitals “flexibility” in treating patients.
He also announced a new public-private partnership to expand coronavirus testing capabilities, as his administration has come under fire for being too slow in making the test available. The partnership will include drive-thru testing in some locations and an online portal to screen those seeking to get tested.
Still, Trump said that officials don’t want people taking the test unless they have certain symptoms. “It’s totally unnecessary,” Trump said. He added, “This will pass.”