Senator Van Hollen visits NIH to receive an update from the team working to research and develop a potential coronavirus vaccine.

Coronavirus Resource Page

My top priority is to ensure that Marylanders have all the resources they need to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic and are protected from the economic hardship resulting from it. This is an unprecedented public health and economic crisis that affects every citizen. I will keep fighting to make sure that the American people get the relief they need.


Since the pandemic hit hard in March, I’ve worked to pass three major COVID-19 emergency relief funding packages in Congress. The Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act became law on March 6th, followed by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act on March 18th. This bipartisan legislation bolstered our public health infrastructure, provided critical food assistance, and supported state unemployment insurance systems—among other key provisions.


The bipartisan CARES Act, which was signed into law on March 27th, built on that foundation by improving our public health response and testing capacity, supplying unemployment and eviction protections to those hardest hit, and providing businesses with targeted small loan and grant funding through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The relief we secured through CARES was reinforced by an additional interim bill that funded frontline health care providers and made key fixes to the PPP.


There is still more work to be done in making sure Americans get the emergency relief they need, especially as critical provisions from the CARES Act begin to expire and funding begins to run out. In May, the House of Representatives passed the HEROES Act, which would have improved and extended provisions established in CARES and provided essential new funding. But Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has blocked this bill from receiving a vote on the Senate floor and the White House has failed to strike a new relief deal with the House of Representatives.


The HEROES Act passed the House over five months ago, but the Senate GOP refuses to vote on this robust relief package to help Americans who are facing mounting bills. More recently, the House passed a revised version of the HEROES Act in an effort to reach a bipartisan compromise—Majority Leader McConnell rejected that proposal too.


And even though the Senate GOP has spent months killing any effort to pass additional relief, they’ve rushed to confirm a new Supreme Court Justice with the hopes of seeing the Affordable Care Act struck down, potentially stripping healthcare from millions of Americans. The GOP’s obsession with sabotaging the ACA at all costs and putting at risk protections for those with pre-existing conditions is particularly disgraceful during this pandemic. This assault on health care would knock down Marylanders just as they’re trying to get back on their feet.


It’s time for Republicans to come back to the negotiating table—in good faith—and work with the rest of Congress to pass real relief now. We have a responsibility to deliver on this for the American people—our schools, small businesses, frontline workers, and local governments are counting on us to act. I will do everything in my power to make sure we get this done.


Below you'll find answers to common questions about the coronavirus outbreak and information about how to access federal resources. You can stay up to date on my efforts in the Senate here. Together, we will weather this storm.

Fact Sheets and Information on Federal Funding Packages
Additional Information
COVID-19 is a virus strain, first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province in China, which has only spread in people since December 2019.
There is currently no vaccine for COVID-19, so the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. CDC recommends the following precautions:
  • Clean your hands often.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
    • Stay home as much as possible.
    • Put distance between yourself and other people.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
    • You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
    • Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities.
      • Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
    • The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.
    • Do NOT use a facemask meant for a healthcare worker.
    • Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.
    • If you are in a private setting and do not have on your cloth face covering, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
    • Throw used tissues in the trash.
    • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Clean and disinfect.
    • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
    • If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

According to CDC, the virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Some recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Maintaining good social distance (about 6 feet) is very important in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads, but we are still learning more about this virus.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading very easily and sustainably between people. Information from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic suggest that this virus is spreading more efficiently than influenza, but not as efficiently as measles, which is highly contagious.

People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
According to the CDC, if you have a fever or cough, you might have COVID-19. Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home. If you think you may have been exposed to COVID-19, contact your healthcare provider immediately.
  • Keep track of your symptoms.

If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, follow the steps below to care for yourself and to help protect other people in your home and community:

  • Stay home except to get medical care.
  • Separate yourself from other people and pets in your home.
  • Monitor your symptoms.
  • Call ahead before visiting your doctor.
  • If you are sick, wear a cloth covering over your nose and mouth.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  • Clean your hands often.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items.
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day.

For any additional questions about your care, contact your healthcare provider or state or local health department.

Community mitigation activities are actions that people and communities can take to slow the spread of infectious diseases. Community mitigation is especially important before a vaccine or drug becomes widely available. Individuals, communities, schools, business and health care organizations all have a role to play in community mitigation, and policies, like limits on large gatherings, restrictions on businesses, and school closures, are often needed in order to fully implement community mitigation strategies. The latest guidance on recommended preparations for these and other entities can be found here.

Contacting Senator Van Hollen's Office
In order to follow the guidance of public health officials and ensure the safety of constituents and staff due to COVID-19, the majority of Senator Van Hollen’s staff will be teleworking until further notice. As a result, our offices will be closed to the public, but all phone lines will remain fully open and fully staffed. Constituents seeking assistance can reach our constituent services teams at: (301) 545-1500. Those with general questions or concerns about federal policy can reach our Capitol Hill team at: (202) 224-4654. Urgent issues for my office can be emailed to We urge all constituents to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Maryland Department of Health guidelines to protect themselves and their families and we look forward to serving you in person at our offices soon.
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