Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart

Representing the 25th District of FLORIDA

COVID-19 Resources

Legislative Action

Federal Government Response to Coronavirus, COVID-19

March 3: The House passed an $8.3 billion emergency supplemental appropriations package.

March 11: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) awarded $27.2 million to Florida to support the COVID-19 response.

March 13: The House passed the “Families First Coronavirus Response Act,” which provides testing and paid sick leave for workers impacted by the coronavirus, and also provides additional resources to expand our testing capabilities and accessibility.

March 27: The CARES Act was signed into law. This is a $2 trillion emergency relief package that provides immediate aid to those who have lost their jobs, businesses struggling to stay open and keep their employees working, and the thousands of brave healthcare providers at the forefront of this global outbreak. 

April 23: The House passed H.R. 266, the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, which would provide additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program while also allocating additional resources to help hospitals and increase testing capabilities.

December 21: The House passed a $900 billion COVID relief bill that provides critical assistance for small businesses, enhances funding for vaccine distribution, and delivers aid for families that need it.

COVID-19 Vaccine Information

The state is hosting mobile, one-day vaccination clinics in partnership with local community organizations to increase vaccine access to all Floridians. 
  • Mobile vaccine locations can be found here.

Additional vaccination sites include: 

There are also State and Federally-supported vaccination sites near you!

Please note that hours and operations will vary per vaccination site, with pharmacies listing additional information on their websites.

Governor DeSantis has also launched a team to provide in-home vaccinations for homebound seniors. Email HomeboundVaccine@em.myflorida.com to put in your request for vaccination.

Veterans

  • All veterans in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Monroe counties who are patients of the Miami VA Healthcare System can now get the COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of age and medical condition
  • Vaccines are available for walk-ins or by appointment, while supplies last
    • Click here for locations and appointment information.
  • Miami-Dade County residents can sign up to receive a vaccination appointment at a County, State, or Federally-run site.

Hendry County Residents

Collier County Residents

  • DOH-Collier provides the Moderna vaccine at DOH-Collier Naples site, Building H: 3339 East Tamiami Trail, Naples, FL 34112. No appointment is needed. ​For more information visit the Collier County Health Department Website.

The Florida Department of Health in Collier County (DOH-Collier) is aware of Eventbrite scams throughout the state. Please note: DOH-Collier will not ask for your social security number, credit card information, or bank information. Furthermore, DOH-Collier is not charging for the vaccine. If a site you are using is asking for payment information, please DO NOT provide this information and report the issue.

Local Resources

Here are a few local resources to help you stay informed:   

Miami-Dade Florida Department of Health 

Hendry County Health Department

Collier County Health Department 

Veteran's Health Administration 

If your employment has been negatively impacted by COVID-19, you may be eligible to receive Reemployment Assistance from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

COVID-19 Resources for Individuals and Employers: https://www.floridajobsresources.com

Reemployment Frequently Asked Questionshttp://floridajobs.org/docs/default-source/reemployment-assistance-center/new-individual-faq-includes-cares-act-final.pdf 

Additional Ways to Apply for Reemployment Assistance
Beginning this week, CareerSource locations across the state will be providing paper applications and assisting Floridians with submitting their Reemployment Assistance applications. Visit www.CareerSourceFlorida.com for information and center locations.

FedEx is offering free printing and mailing of Reemployment Assistance paper applications at over 100 storefronts across the state.

Applications can be downloaded at www.FloridaJobs.org/COVID-19. Once the application is complete, individuals should mail them to:\

Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
P.O. Box 5350
Tallahassee, FL 32314-5350

Food Assistance

South Florida residents who need food assistance, visit the Feeding South Florida site to locate a food pantry near you.

If you live in Collier or Hendry County and need food assistance, the Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida, Inc. will be providing food distribution at locations throughout the counties. 

Click here for a list of Free Food Distribution Locations.

Click here for Upcoming Food Distributions in Your Neighborhood.

For Small Businesses and Nonprofits

 

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce also compiled a list of programs providing financial assistance to small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

  • The bill also includes several small business provisions designed to help farmers stay in business and take care of their employees during this difficult time.
  • These include provisions that allow farmers to work with their trusted farm credit institutions for the purposes of securing payroll tax loans, along with 1-year deferrals, 100% guarantees, and low rates.  
  • Additional funding is provided for USDA agencies that are on the front lines of responding to COVID-19, including the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS), the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), and the Farm Service Agency (FSA).   
  • USDA added flexibilities for Crop Insurance to support America’s farmers and ranchers 
  • For a complete list of the latest resources and information on USDA actions click here.

Florida small businesses impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for short-term, interest-free loans through the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program.

The Small Business Administration has also approved Economic Injury Disaster Loans for Florida small businesses and private, non-profit organizations suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the coronavirus.

Relief for Employees​

U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) published additional implementation guidance pursuant to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).  

The new guidance includes two posters – one for federal workers and one for all other employees – that will fulfill notice requirements for employers obligated to inform employees about their rights under the new law.  In addition, the WHD released a questions and answers document about posting requirements, as well as a Field Assistance Bulletin describing WHD’s 30-day non-enforcement policy.

Resources for Seniors

The Emergency Home Energy Assistance for the Elderly Program (EHEAP) helps seniors over the age of 60 pay their electric bill.

The Alliance for Aging’s SHINE program is still completing applications for the Medicaid program that pays for their monthly Medicare premium, as well as applications for the Low-Income Subsidy that reduces Medicare Beneficiary’s prescription drug costs.

For more information on these programs, visit the Alliance for Aging website or call 305-670-4357.

Resources for Veterans

Veterans who are concerned they may have symptoms of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), influenza or a cold should contact the VISN 8 Clinical Contact Center at 1-877-741-3400 (toll-free) before going to a VA facility. Additionally, this website is a single source of general information from the VA on the latest significant events and updates related to COVID-19.

Travel Assistance

If you have upcoming travel, I urge you to monitor the State Department’s website for the latest updates on travel restrictions or visit the CDC’s Travel Health Notices, or Travel Frequently Asked Questions

U.S. Citizens traveling or living abroad, are encouraged to sign up for the Smart Traveler

Avoid Scams

If you or someone you know has been a victim of an IRS-related coronavirus scam, and for tips on what red flags to look for in potential scams, visit the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration website. This page also has tips for taxpayers to know what red flags to look for in potential scams.

The Wall Street Journal also released an informative article on the COVID-19 text and phone scams that are designed to trick you during this time. To read more, click here

If you have upcoming travel, I urge you to monitor the State Department’s website for the latest updates on travel restrictions or visit the CDC’s Travel Health Notices, or Travel Frequently Asked Questions.  

If you are experiencing coronavirus symptoms, you should immediately contact your doctor, or contact the Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 Call Center at 1 (866) 779-6121. 

I will continue to monitor this situation closely and work with my colleagues in Congress to ensure that my constituents are prepared and receive the care they need. Information will be added regularly to this page, but to obtain live updates, connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, and Instagram, or call any of my offices.

To receive these weekly updates directly to your email, please subscribe to my e-newsletter.

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