Washington — The House of Representatives passed a new coronavirus relief bill April 23 that calls for additional funding for federal loan programs to help businesses nationwide, including dental practices, recover from the economic fallout of the pandemic.
The Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act infuses $370 billion into the Paycheck Protection Program, Economic Injury Disaster Loans, and emergency Economic Injury Disaster Loans grants. The bill passed the Senate April 21 and President Donald Trump signed the bill into law April 24.
The legislation includes more than $250 billion in unrestricted funds for the Paycheck Protection Program. There is also an additional $60 billion for smaller lending institutions, with $30 million earmarked for lenders with assets valued at less than $10 billion, and $30 billion for lenders with assets between $10-50 billion.
For the Economic Injury Disaster Loans, the bill designates an additional $50 billion for Economic Injury Disaster Loans and an additional $10 billion for the Economic Injury Disaster Loans advance grants. There is also an additional $100 billion allocated for hospitals and COVID-19 testing.
The ADA continues to federally advocate to help dental practice owners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In an April 23 email to members, ADA President Chad P. Gehani said the ADA is urging them to consider applying for both the Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans.
“If you have already applied and the processing of your application was put on hold because of the lack of funding, please keep an eye out for a message from your lender about status updates. If you have not applied for either loan, the ADA strongly urges that you consider applying for them as quickly as possible. Although additional funding was allocated for these loan programs, we still expect funding to be exhausted quickly.”
The ADA continues to review COVID-19 related legislative proposals to include provisions that will be beneficial to dentists, their practices and their patients. Previously, the Association, along with the Organized Dentistry Coalition and state dental associations and societies, wrote to leaders in the House and Senate asking lawmakers to increase funding and flexibility for the Small Business Administration loans established or modified by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.
“The ADA has been raising its voice on your behalf as you work to keep your practices going and look ahead to rebuilding when this crisis is behind us. We continue to stay on top of the issues and will keep you updated through it all,” Dr. Gehani said.
For detailed information on applying for the Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans, the ADA has posted an article in Dental Practice Success with step-by-step instructions on how to do that. For a list of lenders by state participating in the Paycheck Protection Program, visit the Small Business Administration's website.
For the latest updates about issues surrounding COVID-19, visit ADA.org/virus.