Public Health Funding under SLFRF

Public health funding is available to state and local governments under the Coronavirus State and Local Funds Fiscal Recovery Program (SLFRF).  The Final Rule of the initiative, which has been in effect since April 1, 2022, describes four large categories of use for responses to the public health emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The categories are: 

  • COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention 
  • Medical Expenses 
  • Behavioral Health Care (i.e., mental health, substance abuse treatment, and more) 
  • Preventing and Responding to Violence 

Just as with the other subcategories of the Responding to Public Health and Economic Impacts of COVID-19, recipients of any funding should be defined as an impacted (or disproportionately impacted) household, business, or nonprofit, or a class (group) of one of the three. For help determining eligibility of a group, click here. 

COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention funding should be designed to reduce the impacts of COVID-19 on the American public. While this subcategory of the SLFRF focuses specifically on the public health impacts, there is still a wide variety of possibilities for funding. For instance, some possibilities for local governments to apply for funding as detailed by the Treasury are: 

  • Support for prevention, mitigation, or other services in congregate living facilities and schools 
  • Support for prevention and mitigation strategies in small businesses, nonprofits, and impacted industries 
  • Medical facilities generally dedicated to COVID-19 treatment and mitigation (e.g. ICUs & emergency rooms) 
  • Vaccination programs, including clinics, incentives, and transportation 
  • Medical and PPE/protective supplies 

Funding for Medical Expenses can be used on costs incurred by medical providers, households, or any group who suffered medical expenditures. This includes, but is not limited to, paid family and medical leave for public employees to comply with COVID-19 guidelines, unreimbursed expenses for COVID-19 medical care, and treatment of long COVID. 

Funding opportunities under Behavioral Health Care acknowledge the broad toll that COVID-19 has taken on Americans’ health, looking at mental health and substance abuse treatment. Enumerated uses in the Final Rule include, but are not limited to: 

  • Behavioral health facilities and equipment 
  • Prevention, outpatient treatment, inpatient treatment, and crisis care for behavioral health 
  • Enhanced behavioral health services in school 
  • Support for equitable access to reduce disparities in access to high-quality treatment 
  • Expansion of access to evidence-based services for opioid use prevention, treatment, harm reduction, and recovery 

The category of Preventing and Responding to Violence likewise works to provide funding for the broad impacts of COVID-19 on the United States. Due to the pandemic, violence, especially gun violence, has increased in some communities. In order to mitigate this impact, funding is available for: 

  • Referrals to trauma recovery services for victims of crime 
  • Community violence prevention programs (especially for evidence-based programs such as behavioral therapy, job training, education, housing and relocation services, and financial assistance) 
  • Gun violence prevention and mitigation 
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