Capito launches website to help West Virginians during Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) launched a new page on her website Thursday to help bring current and accurate information to West Virginians during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“During this time of uncertainty, it is vital that we bring accurate information to West Virginians as soon as it is available,” said Senator Capito. “With the first few confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus in our state, West Virginians must be provided with the proper resources to help keep our families informed and our at-risk population safe. This website will help deliver information on current cases, health and safety tips, and direction from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), state officials, and the federal government. Additionally, as testing becomes readily available in our state, directions to testing locations, as well as contacts if you or a loved one begin to show symptoms of the virus, will be available as well.”


Further information is available through the Center for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization.


Senator Capito is also regularly updating her Facebook and Twitter accounts with the latest information related to this outbreak and resources available to the state.


Background on Senator Capito’s Coronavirus efforts:


Senator Capito continues to be focused on this issue, particularly in ensuring the appropriate agencies have the funding they need to mitigate the spread of the virus, test those feeling ill, and treat those infected. 


Senator Capito has been in touch with the White House—including multiples times this week—to express the need for more testing kits and additional flexibility for West Virginia’s hospital as the situation continues to evolve.


As chairman of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Capito has made a point to ask the agencies she funds if they are prepared and ready to combat the coronavirus. Below are more details on Senator Capito’s efforts:


  • Met with a number of officials, including:


o   Vice President Mike Pence, CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield, West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services (WVDHHS) Commissioner and State Health Officer Dr. Cathy Slemp, members of the Coronavirus Taskforce, and others on the issue.


  • Communicated with West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) Secretary Bill Crouch about the state’s testing issues.


  • Spoke with West Virginia Hospital Association President and CEO Joe Letnaunchyn and West Virginia Health Care Association CEO Marty Wright.


  • Voted in favor of the emergency supplemental funding package to help states treat, prevent, and prepare for the Coronavirus. A portion of the funding provided for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is specifically tied to the FY2019 Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) grant awards for states and localities. In West Virginia, this means the state will receive at least $5 million in funding.


  • Attended a senators-only Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee briefing to ask questions directly of leadership from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the State Department, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).


  • Spoke with West Virginia Governor Jim Justice about West Virginia’s preparedness and readiness.


  • Asked various government officials about the role of the aviation industry in containing the spread of the disease.


  • During two Homeland Security Appropriations subcommittee hearings:


o   Questioned Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administrator David Pekoske about TSA’s coordinating efforts with health agencies.


o   Asked Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Acting Secretary Chad Wolf about the department’s efforts to monitor and control the coronavirus.