Federal funding for COVID-19 testing, treatment and vaccines is drying up

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) — Congress failed to pass coronavirus funding in its latest government spending bill. Now the White House is warning that next week it will have to waive coverage for COVID-19 tests, vaccines and treatments.

UVA Health doctors say it could hurt us later.

“The idea of ​​living with covid, I think, is really based on the idea that we can get a lot of people vaccinated, test a lot of people, and then treat people if they need that treatment,” said the Dr. Patrick Jackson of UVA Health. said Thursday, March 17.

The lack of COVID-19 funding could get tricky, especially for the uninsured.

“The bottom line is that these treatments can make a big difference and outcomes especially for the most vulnerable people, but the treatments don’t work until very soon after symptoms appear,” Dr Jackson said.

If funding does not arrive and supplies run out, providers could find themselves between health and health care.

“We’re going to have to make tough choices about who can access these drugs,” Jackson said.

Congress tried to get more COVID-19 funding, but ran into some difficulties.

“We have to do this because we certainly can’t take it for granted that this is all in the rearview mirror,” said US Senator Tim Kaine.

Senator Kaine says Congress is trying to pass more coronavirus relief, but not everyone can agree on the amount.

“We want to provide funding, we are ready to provide funding, we just want to get answers on what is our vaccine stock? What is our stock of tests? What is our stock of treatments? said the senator.

Dr. Jackson says funding is also important for future research.

“If we have to scale back these clinical trials, that means more delays in finding better treatments for COVID-19, and that could really set us back significantly,” the doctor said.

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