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Supplemental CARES Act funding helps PureView maintain staffing

PureView Health Center received $503,000 in funding for COVID-19 response as part of the CARES Act signed March 27. The money is in addition to their regular funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

According to HRSA, the extra money provided to health centers is to "support the detection of coronavirus and/or the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of COVID-19, including maintaining or increasing health center capacity and staffing levels during the coronavirus-related public health emergency."

"We will be using it to keep our staff employed (payroll), which of course, affects Parker Medical Center," Steeley told the BVD in an April 16 e-mail.

Steeley said they have been ordering supplies on their own because they haven't been able to get much from the state's supply or from the Strategic National Stockpile since most of those supplies have been prioritized for hospitals.

"We have been receiving most of what we have ordered, so that is good," Steeley said. "Our PPE supply is sufficient at this time. Testing supplies are another story. We have enough to get through the end of the month, and we have not heard from the state if we will get more."

According to a pair of April 18 updates from Sen. Steve Daines office, 5000 nasal swab kits and 600 rapid test kits have been shipped to Montana.

In Lincoln, demand for the tests doesn't currently appear to be overwhelming.

"We test one to two people per week (if that) at Parker Medical Center," Steeley said.

At an April 17 press conference Gov. Steve Bullock saidhe will announce plans this week for a phased re-opening of the economy after the current stay-at-home directives and other orders expire April 24. Nationally, discussions of re-opening economies have fueled concerns about new waves of the disease.

Steeley said PureView isn't planning anything specific to subsequent waves, but said they have all the systems in place to go right back into a COVID-19 response such as the one they are now in.


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