Congresswoman Kendra Horn Introduces Bill To Give Healthcare Workers Hazard Pay


Monday, April 13th 2020, 2:51 pm


Congresswoman Kendra Horn is looking to give a financial incentive to healthcare workers on the frontlines of COVID-19.

“We need to make sure we're taking care of them as they're putting them on the line every day to care for us," said Horn (D), Oklahoma.

The Democrat, who represents Oklahoma's fifth congressional district, introduced a bill with fellow Democrat Joe Neguse from Colorado over the weekend.

Called the "Hazard Pay for the Frontlines During Health Emergencies Act" - it would give healthcare workers on the front lines of public health emergencies a 25 percent increase in salary as hazard pay.

"The employers would pay it,” said Horn. “But it would be federally funded. So the employers would be reimbursed for that additional cost. We're not adding that to the cost of the hospitals or the clinics or the other frontline care facilities."

Horn says she introduced the bill after seeing the sacrifice healthcare workers are making during the pandemic.

According to the latest data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health - 286 healthcare workers in the state have tested positive, and those numbers are higher in some other states.

But the proposal comes as some hospitals in the state furlough and lay off non-essential employees. Horn says Congress is working to help them, too.

"We are doing our best to help both individuals and families and healthcare workers, as well as our economy, come out of this on the other side," said Horn.

Horn says their goal now, is to get more support and get the bill included in their next CARES package.

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