“This is the most aggressive and comprehensive effort to confront a foreign virus in modern history,” the President said. “We will significantly reduce the threat to our citizens, and we will ultimately and expeditiously defeat this virus.”
The President is leading a whole-of-government response, including:
Further action to curb the spread of Coronavirus to the United States from other countries: The President is issuing a proclamation to restrict travel to America from foreign nationals who have recently been in certain European countries. The restriction applies to those who have been in the Schengen Area, 26 countries in Europe with open-borders agreements, in the last 14 days.
Protection for American businesses and workers: President Trump is announcing an economic assistance package to help businesses and workers harmed by the outbreak. He also instructed the Small Business Administration to provide loans to businesses affected by the virus, and instructed the Treasury Department to defer tax payments for individuals and businesses that have been severely impacted.
Early preventative measures: The Trump Administration declared a public health emergency in January to bolster response efforts. That month, the President also acted quickly to restrict travel from foreign nationals arriving from China, and in February, he extended such restrictions to include Iran.
Full support for on-the-ground responders: Last week, President Trump signed into law more than $8 billion to fund response efforts. Working across the public and private sectors, the Administration has taken bold steps to incentivize the development of therapeutics and vaccines, and it continues to drastically expand testing capacity. More than 1 million tests have been distributed nationwide, with another 4 million being shipped out by the end of the week.
Watch: President Trump welcomes leader of Ireland ahead of St. Patrick’s Day
Taoiseach of Ireland Leo Varadkar met with President Trump today, where the two leaders honored the upcoming St. Patrick’s Day holiday and discussed the strengthening relationship between America and Ireland.
St. Patrick’s Day is “a symbol of how close Ireland and America are and how we’re going to continue to stay close into the future,” Prime Minister Varadkar said. Addressing the Coronavirus threat, he reflected on the Administration’s response. “I was with the Vice President this morning, who I know is heading up the task force for you, and he gave me a lot of confidence that you’re getting on top of this and you’re investing in this.”