"My current focus has been and will continue to be to make sure we get critical supplies to those places around the country that need them the most."
— FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor
The federal government continues taking aggressive and proactive steps to address the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The health and safety of the American people is our top priority.
We are halfway through 15 Days to Slow the Spread
. Do your part to flatten the curve:
- Stay home as much as much as possible.
- If you need to go out, practice social distancing.
Under the direction of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, FEMA, HHS and our federal partners are working with state, local, tribal and territorial governments to execute a whole of government response to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the public.
Sixteen states and 4 tribes have issued full stay-at-home orders; in addition to eight states that have issued partial or localized orders, and one state that has issued orders for certain at-risk groups only.
On March 22, President Trump directed the Secretary of Defense to allow the states of California, New York and Washington use of the National Guard in a Title 32 status to support state and local emergency assistance efforts. This allows the governors to activate the National Guard to support their disaster response efforts, on a fully reimbursable basis and under their respective command and control, if that becomes necessary. Additional states can request this assistance and those requests will be considered.
On March 13, 2020, President Trump declared a nationwide emergency pursuant to Sec. 501(b) of Stafford Act. The President's action cuts red tape and bureaucracy and avoids governors needing to request individual emergency declarations.
In addition, the states of California, Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, New York, North Carolina, Texas and Washington were approved for major disaster declarations to assist with additional needs identified in these states.
Medical supplies are en route to these states, including respirators, surgical masks and gowns, face shields, coveralls and gloves. Many supplies have already arrived and additional supplies are en route to these designated areas. The U.S. Navy hospital ship Mercy is en route and expected to be operational by April 1 to support Los Angeles with additional hospital beds and medical staff. The U.S. Navy hospital ship Comfort is expected to be operational by April 4 to support New York City. FEMA issued a $350 million Mission Assignment to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for construction of alternate care facilities in New York. Four sites have been selected.