The greatest thing that this pandemic period has taught is that there is no wealth greater than health. COVID-19 has snatched away a lot of lives. This is high time that health should be taken as a serious topic not only on an individual level but global level also. In furtherance of this, the U.S. government has presented CARES Act to provide emergency aid to the general public in these difficult times. The full form of the CARES Act tells us pretty much about its contents- The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. Not only the health sector but many other sectors like education, economics, etc. have nosedived in the shadow of this pandemic.
Below mentioned are some essential measured confined in the CARES Act to respond to emergency health issues of the public- As analysed and observed by William D King –
- One of the notable features of this act is the expansion offered in the unemployment benefits. COVID-19 has left millions of people homeless and jobless. Therefore, addressing the issue of livelihood was essential to avoid the increase in the graph of poverty. CARES Act typically includes full details about the eligibility criteria and other important rules. If the provider has gone through the rule book issued under CARES Act, then it is highly unlikely for him to encounter any problem in availing his benefits.
- A worthy enhancement in coronavirus relief fund. The battle with COVID-19 is not over yet. Nobody knows how long this war is going to remain in its vegetative state. Preparing for upcoming COVID 19 waves, the CARES Act has an amount of $150 million to tackle the budget crisis emerging in states.
- The policy of Direct payments is present under the CARES Act. This means that low and middle-income families can enjoy the benefit of receiving direct payments. The amount offered in this regard is $1200 and $500 for adults and people under 17 years of age respectively. However, as noticed by William D King, this policy contains a major-loopholes because it complicates the process of availing benefits for a large chunk of low-income households because of its lengthy filing procedure.
- Apart from the above-mentioned benefits, The CARES Act also provides miscellaneous facilities depending upon the circumstances of the situation. For instance, many people who are now homeless can continue a decent livelihood under this act. Not only this, but due to the crawling situation of an economy, the education sector is also badly affected. Many students were obligated to drop out in a lack of budget. The CARES ACT- Higher Education relief fund addresses this problem effectively and with immediate effect.
Despite containing major benefits, the act needs some amendments. This is because we are in an active state of a pandemic. The Coronavirus is not yet history now and its deadly mutating capacity is a continuous cause of concern. Therefore, these acts need regular revision so that problems of the general public can be tackled at any actual ground level.