WASHINGTON, DC (WOWK) – The State of West Virginia will soon receive around $5 million in funding from the Centers for Disease Control for novel coronavirus prevention and preparation.
The money is part of an $8.3 billion measure passed by the U.S. Senate today to help tackle the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, outbreak in hopes of reassuring a fearful public and accelerating the government’s response.
“With this additional funding,” says Sen. Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV), “our country is even more prepared to limit the spread of the coronavirus, test those showing symptoms and treat those suffering.”
The money would pay for a multifaceted attack on a virus that is spreading more widely every day, sending financial markets spiraling, disrupting travel and potentially threatening the U.S. economy’s decade-long expansion. Thursday’s comes a day after a similar amount was approved by the House and sends the bill to the White House for President Donald Trump’s signature. The plan would more than triple the $2.5 billion amount outlined by the White House 10 days ago.
Capito says the $5 million headed to the Mountain State is specifically tied to the FY2019 Public Health Emergency Preparedness grant awards for states and municipalities.
News of the funding comes the same day schools and universities in the state announced changes in their operations to try and control the spread of the virus in West Virginia.
Marshall University announced late in the day it is stopping all international travel for at least the next 10 days and encourages students, faculty or staff who traveled abroad recently and who are experiencing symptoms of a flu or cold to seek medical assistance.
At the same time, West Virginia University also announced it is canceling all 13 study abroad trips for the upcoming spring break in 10 days. The trips were to be faculty-led and planned for countries in Europe and South America. 217 students are affected by the decision.
And Thursday the Kanawha County School District unveiled its plan on dealing with any confirmed cases of COVID-19. While urging students, faculty and staff to practice good personal hygiene practices, like hand washing, district officials also said that if a confirmed case is found in a school that school will be closed for up to three days for cleaning.
Also, Charleston’s Yeager airport also announced extra precautions for travelers but says they will not result in delays at security screening points.