10/20/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 10/20/2021 10:54
BALTIMORE, MD. (Wednesday, October 20, 2021) - Today, Mayor Brandon M. Scott announced his administration's first American Rescue Plan (ARPA) investment. As the central agency in the COVID-19 response, the Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD) will receive an investment totaling $80 million over four years. ARPA funding provided to BCHD will allow the City to continue its robust response efforts and support Baltimore's most vulnerable communities.
"As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the public health of Baltimore residents is my top priority," said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. "Increasing testing, vaccinations, and telehealth services to Baltimoreans, particularly in our neighborhoods that need them most, will allow us to continue to keep our residents safe, healthy, and alive."
The investment will provide tens of thousands of at-home, laboratory, and rapid COVID-19 tests and dedicated testing staff; funding to develop telehealth infrastructure for Baltimore City health care clinics; the purchase, management, and storage of personal protective equipment; and 120 funded contact tracers and supervisors.
Additionally, ARPA funding will be used to create an Immunization Office and a mobile vaccination team for the purpose of increasing vaccination rates among vulnerable and hesitant communities.
The investment will help Baltimore fight food insecurity by supporting home delivery boxes and grab-and-go meals instrumental to keeping Baltimore seniors, people with disabilities, and vulnerable residents fed during the pandemic, while limiting exposure to the virus. It will also fund additional staff to protect Baltimore seniors from violence and abuse.
Dr. Letitia Dzirasa, Health Commissioner said, "I am proud of the work and staff of the Baltimore City Health Department. With the expansion of resources made available by the American Rescue Plan Act's funding, and the leadership of Mayor Brandon Scott, the Baltimore City Health Department will continue our robust public health response to the pandemic, as well as positioning ourselves to better meet the health needs of Baltimore City residents."
"The COVID-19 public health emergency continues to negatively impact the health and wealth of Baltimoreans," said Shamiah Kerney, the City's Chief Recovery Officer. "As such, it is vital that the Administration continues to provide the necessary resources to help overcome COVID-19. The Mayor's Office of Recovery Programs will partner with BCHD to ensure these funds are implemented efficiently and effectively."
"We are thankful for the partnership of our Congressional delegation for their advocacy and support in our efforts to secure this investment and progress Baltimore forward with a focus on equity," continued Mayor Scott.
For additional information, visit the Mayor's Office of Recovery Programs website at arp.baltimorecity.gov. This page will be updated frequently with the latest information.
As a reminder, Baltimore nonprofits can apply to receive American Rescue Plan Act funds. Review resources and complete the application, which closes at the end of the year, at arp.baltimorecity.gov.
About the Mayor's Office of Recovery Programs
The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) has provided $641 million to the City of Baltimore in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency and its negative economic impacts. Mayor Brandon M. Scott has established the Mayor's Office of Recovery Programs to transparently and effectively administer this funding on behalf of the City.