Kelly, Sinema, AZ Delegation Members Urge Congressional Leaders to Provide COVID Funding to Support Vulnerable Arizonans and Health Providers
Arizona Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema, joined by members of Arizona’s Congressional delegation, urged Congressional leaders to reach an agreement on critical COVID health aid for vulnerable, uninsured Arizonans and health providers in the state.
“I will keep working in the Senate to ensure Arizonans have access to vaccines, boosters, and testing so that parents can continue to safely send their kids to school, our businesses can stay open, and we can grow our economy,” said Kelly.
“Arizona must receive robust COVID relief to ensure our most vulnerable – including uninsured Arizonans – have the life-saving, critical care they need from Arizona’s health care providers,” said Sinema.
Kelly and Sinema, joined by U.S. Representatives Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01), Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-02), Raúl Grijalva (AZ-03), Ruben Gallego (AZ-07), and Greg Stanton (AZ-09), emphasized the need for additional support for health providers testing, treating, and vaccinating Arizona’s most vulnerable communities – including rural Arizonans, seniors, uninsured Arizonans, tribal members, and other underserved communities. The letter emphasizes how Arizona continues to struggle with insufficient staffing levels and elevated levels of delayed care, urging more funding for the Uninsured Program within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)’s Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), that would support Arizona health care providers caring for uninsured Arizonans.
Arizona received $227 per capita – the third lowest among all states and Washington, DC in Provider Relief Funds. Kelly and Sinema stressed such low levels of relief are insufficient and impact a provider’s ability to provide care.
The delegation noted that with potential new COVID-19 variants looming, Arizona’s rural providers will be unable to afford the needed nursing staff to care for their at-risk communities, many of whom are unable to care for those medically-underserved including agricultural, older, and tribal populations.