Western New York is Quickly Running Out of Tests
News from the B uffalo, New York Office of U.S. Democratic Constressman Brian Higgins
Posted March 18th, 2020 on Niagara At Large
Buffalo, New York – In a letter to Admiral Brett Giroir, Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services and Coronavirus Czar, Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) is demanding the Administration address the urgent need for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) test kits.
Higgins writes –
“This Administration should be acting in a proactive way to help communities plan to address this crisis responsibly. It is horrifying that at this time we must instead beg for your attention. Our nation is already significantly behind the curve in our response to this public health crisis, and we cannot afford further delays in testing.”
Yesterday Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, in public communications and in discussions with Congressman Higgins, expressed concern about the dire shortage of COVID-19 testing kits. New York State was able to provide an additional 200 tests, but that will only get the County through the next couple days.
In his letter, Higgins goes on to write –
“If requisition orders for COVID-19 testing supplies from the CDC or other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are crowding out the ability of local public health departments to obtain their own supply, that represents a serious threat to the health and safety of people in my district and around the country.
“HHS must immediately re-evaluate the process by which it is obtaining COVID-19 testing materials and distributing them to state and local public health officials, and guarantee the ability of those officials to receive a steady supply of testing materials in a timely fashion.”
The House of Representatives approved two pieces of legislation to address the COVID-19 outbreak providing funding for testing, resources for states and localities, support for research and relief for individuals and small business.
To read Congressman Brian Higgin’s full letter to Trump’s ‘Coronavirus Czar’, click on – <https://higgins.house.gov/sites/higgins.house.gov/files/COVID-19%20Testing%20Materials_Signed.pdf>
A Brief Afterword from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper –
If Niagara At Large’s Ontario readers are wondering why I am posting the above News Release from a Buffalo, New York area Congressman, there are two reasons.
First, Niagara At Large is proud to also have many American readers, including friends and readers in neighbouring communities right across the border, and we strive to be a source of news and commentary for them too.
Second, and most specifically to this issue, we all live on the same continent together and we share a border where there is a good deal of back and forth flow of people. So what happens to people on one side of the border can impact people on the other.
In this case, where we have a killer virus that has travelled around the world, it matters very much to all of us when we have a federal government in the United States that started out, not so many weeks ago, calling this a “hoax” and we have someone posing as a president who has a long record, going back to his carnival clown days as a serial bankrupt real estate baron hosting a reality TV show, of also being a pathological liar.
Just a week or so ago, he stood before TV cameras and said ‘everyone who wants a test will get one’ to determine if they have or are a carrier of this virus.
Now here is U.S. Congressman Brian Higgins, who represents the Buffalo, New York area, stating in a March 18th letter to a representative of Trump’s team of stooges and incompetents, that people in his Western New York district are “quickly running out of tests.”
Even with the Canada-U.S. land border crossings now closed, as of this March 18th, to everyone but those directly involved in official government business or essential commercial traffic, the ongoing failure of the Trump administration to take this pandemic as seriously as it should endangers all of us who live on this continent.
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