On March 13, 2020, the President declared a nationwide emergency for the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic for all states, tribes, territories, and the District of Columbia under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act.
Looking for guidance and best practices for responding to COVID-19 and other disasters? Visit our Best Practices page and review our Pandemic Operational Guidance for the 2020 Hurricane Season.
FEMA Financial Support
State, local, tribal, and territorial government entities and certain private non-profit organizations can apply for Public Assistance (PA) reimbursements for emergency protective measures taken during the pandemic.
- Review the types of emergency medical care and other emergency protective measures that are eligible for public assistance reimbursements.
- Review the simplified steps to apply for public assistance grants and apply online.
- Get guidance on how other sources of COVID-19 relief funding can be used to meet the non-federal cost share requirement for FEMA public assistance.
Get information specific to:
- Non-profit organizations
- Tribal governments
- Fire and emergency medical services agencies
- Organizations that provide emergency food and shelter services
In the process of applying for a FEMA grant?
- Review COVID-19 supplemental funding opportunities for Fiscal Year 2020:
- Get the latest information on funding opportunities and answers to frequently asked questions.
Already have a FEMA grant?
Learn about additional flexibilities (exceptions) to provide administrative relief to financial assistance recipients affected by the loss of operational capacity and increased costs due to the COVID-19 crisis.
New Policies and Guidance
FEMA Administrator Letters
FEMA, HHS and federal partners are supporting the White House Guidelines to Opening Up America Again with resources and programs:
- FEMA and HHS simplified the process for states and territories to help public health labs access free diagnostics supplies and reagents for COVID-19 testing through CDC’s International Reagent Resource.
- To support the Testing Blueprint, FEMA is delivering testing materials to states, territories and tribes to help increase testing capacity and support reopening plans.
- The FDA launched the Coronavirus Treatment Acceleration Program (CTAP) to speed approval of drugs and therapies and has issued numerous emergency use authorizations for manufacturers and laboratories.
- FEMA and HHS have released an Alternate Care Site toolkit and fact sheet with guidance and technical assistance on establishing sites to care for COVID-19 patients.
- FEMA is delivering medical supplies to nearly 15,000 Medicaid and Medicare-certified nursing homes.
- FEMA is sharing best practices, tools and resources that help emergency managers respond to COVID-19, plan for recovery, and respond to other emergencies during the pandemic.
- The HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) is sharing healthcare planning resources for COVID-19 response and recovery.
- The CDC has guidelines, resources and tools to help states, tribes and territories identify new cases, break chains of transmission, and protect first responders and health care workers from infection.
- FEMA and HHS released a Community Mitigation Decision Support Tool to help government officials determine whether community mitigation should be adjusted.
Professional Association Resources
Find COVID-19 specific resource pages with organizations that support state and local governments:
- Council of State Governments
- Government Finance Officers Association
- International City County Management Association
- International Public Management Association for Human Resources
- National Association of Counties
- National Conference of State Legislatures
- National Emergency Management Association
- National Governors Association
- National League of Cities
- Native American Finance Officers Association
- Pacific Disaster Center
- US Conference of Mayors
Federally recognized tribal governments have several options for COVID-19 related FEMA assistance.
- Public assistance may be requested under the nationwide emergency declaration or through a major disaster declaration.
- Crisis counseling is available to states that meet certain criteria. Tribal members that live inside those states will have access.
Each of the ten FEMA regions has Regional Tribal Liaisons to coordinate and connect tribes with FEMA leadership and program subject matter experts for information, technical assistance and resources.
Defense Production Act
The Defense Production Act (DPA) gives the President the authority to work with the private sector to prioritize federal government contracts and to allocate materials to aid the national defense, including emergency response and preparedness activities.
President Trump issued an Executive Order on March 18 and a memorandum on April 3 outlining use of the Defense Production Act in response to COVID-19. Since then, the Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) has rated contracts under the DPA to multiple companies for ventilators and FEMA has also issued a DPA enabled production order to 3M for 10 million N95 respirators.
Defense Production Act
Applying the Defense Production Act
National Guard Activation Under Title 32
On March 22, President Trump directed the Secretary of Defense to permit full federal reimbursement through FEMA for states’ use of their National Guard forces.
The President’s action provides Governors continued command of their National Guard forces, while being federally funded under Title 32. Each state’s National Guard is still under the authority of the Governor and is working in concert with the Department of Defense.
Use of the National Guard