Our highest priority is keeping Arizonans healthy, safe, and economically secure.

Arizonans: the fastest way to get assistance or info. from our office is to email casework@sinema.senate.gov.

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INFLUENZA (THE FLU)​​​​​​​

Getting an influenza (flu) vaccine is more important this year than ever. Both coronavirus and the flu are contagious respiratory illnesses that share many of the same symptoms. All of us need to get our flu shots to reduce the burden on our health care systems and save medical resources for coronavirus patients. Reduce yours and your loved ones’ risk this influenza season by getting your flu shot today!

Please visit the Arizona Department of Health Services website for more information on flu shots and where you can find a flu vaccine provider near you

  • Seniors should also talk to their doctor about whether a high-dose flu shot for seniors age 65 and older is right for you. 
  • Those with egg allergies should talk to their doctors about alternative options and whether a flu shot is right for them. 
  • Flu vaccines are not recommended for children less than six months old. 
  • People who have a moderate or severe illness with a fever should wait until their symptoms get better before getting a flu shot.

What are the symptoms of the flu?

  • Fever (usually high)
  • Dry cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Headache
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Muscle aches
  • Stomach symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, also can occur but are more common in children than adults

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The recently passed CARES Act invests $150 billion in hospitals, health care workers, and others who are a part of the COVID-19 reponse ($55 billion more than the original draft legislation) for: 

  • personal and protective equipment for health care workers
  • testing supplies
  • increased workforce and training
  • new construction to house patients
  • an increase of the Strategic National Stockpile
  • medical research into COVID-19
  • Medicare payment increases to all hospitals and providers to ensure that they receive the funding they need during this crisis

The subsequent passage of the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act invests a further $75 billion in hospitals and health workers - and provides $25 billion to boost coronavirus-testing.

Below are local Arizona updates and resources for keeping you, your loved ones, and your communities healthy. Arizonans and all Americans should listen to government scientists and specialists. They are experts and will help Arizonans stay safe, healthy, and calm.

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Government Medical Resources:

The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) has a website dedicated to COVID-19 that is updated daily. You can find the most up-to-date information about the disease in Arizona at:

Arizona Department of Health Services

For information about Arizona’s Medicaid program, the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), please check out their FAQs here:

AHCCCS

Below is a link to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which will be regularly updated. This is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will provide updated information as it becomes available, in addition to updated guidance: 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Arizona Department of Economic Security and the Arizona Department of Health Services, Crisis Response Network and 2-1-1 Arizona has launched a new, statewide COVID-19 Hotline. If you have questions about testing, symptoms, or other concerns please call 2-1-1 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week to talk to a health care professional.

Click HERE for CDC guidelines on how to create a protective face covering. 

Click HERE for CDC re-opening guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting. 

Access to Care:

The Arizona Department of Health Services recommends that you call your health care professional if you feel sick with fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, or if you live in or have recently traveled from an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19.

Your healthcare provider will determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19. A hotline has been set-up to answer questions about COVID-19 from Arizona providers (for testing, patient guidance) and the general public (for testing, isolation, quarantine): 2-1-1

If you are seeking a COVID-19 test: The Arizona Department of Health Services maintains a list of COVID-19 testing sites in partnership with local health providers. Please note that most sites require people to register in advance and be approved.

Check the Department’s website HERE for more information on where to find the COVID-19 testing sites, hours of operation, and information about pre-registration. Additional sites are constantly being added, so please check back often.

Crisis Response Networks: 

In Maricopa County / Central Arizona 

In Northern Arizona

In Southern Arizona 

  • Community-wide Crisis Line: (520) 622-6000.
  • Cochise, Graham, Greenlee, La Paz, Pima, Pinal, Santa Cruz, Yuma Counties or on the San Carlos Apache Reservation: (866) 495-6735.

Tohono O'Odham Nation: (844) 423-8759.

If you are a victim of domestic violence call 1-800-799-7233 or text "LOVEIS" to 22522 for help.

In need of health care and not sure where to go? 

Have health insurance? Call or visit your insurer’s website to figure which hospitals and providers take your insurance. 

Don’t have insurance? Try visiting your local community health care center, where you can receive primary care services, behavioral health, dental, OBGYN, pediatric, and pharmacy services depending on the location. Visit the Arizona Association of Community Health Centers and search by location.

Try visiting your county’s health department website to find more local providers by location and by service: 

Avoid Coronavirus Scams: Here are some tips from the FTC to help Arizonans avoid scammers. 

HEALTH INSURANCE

Arizonans who lose their jobs may also lose health insurance. 

For information on health insurance plans offered through the federal marketplace, go to https://www.healthcare.gov/ and click “See if I can Enroll.”

For more information on whether you would qualify for Arizona’s Medicaid program, known as the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment Center (AHCCCS), please go to their website. Eligibility may depend on your age, income, household size, and if you are expecting. 

Here is what you will need before you apply whether you are applying for the first time, or renewing your benefits:

  • Proof of citizenship and identity for everyone who is applying for benefits.
  • Alien Registration Cards, if there are non-U.S. citizens applying for benefits in your household.
  • Social Security numbers for everyone, or proof that a Social Security number has been applied for.
  • Birth certificates for everyone who is applying for benefits.
  • Name, address & daytime phone number of landlord or neighbor.
  • A statement verifying your address and the names of everyone living with you. The statement must be made by a non-relative who doesn’t live with you.  It must be signed, dated and include that person's address and telephone number.
  • Proof of ALL money your household received from any source last month and this month.
  • Proof that your employment ended and last date paid.
  • Verification of any medical insurance other than AHCCCS.

Looking to apply for AHCCCS medical assistance, but also want to see if you qualify for food assistance or cash assistance at the same time? You can apply for yourself, your family, or someone close to you by submitting an online application at Health-e-Arizona Plus.

Arizonans looking to get their kids enrolled in KidsCare, Arizona’s Children’s Health Insurance Program, can find more information HEREChildren under the age of 19 may qualify for KidsCare, even if they are not eligible for other AHCCCS health insurance. For those who qualify, monthly premiums may apply. 

EMPLOYER SPONSORED HEALTH COVERAGE and FLEXIBLE SPENDING ACCOUNTS (FSAs)

The IRS recently released new guidance to help employers and plan sponsors give employees new flexibilities related to their employer-sponsored health coverage or FSAs. Please note that while the IRS is allowing these new options, your employer or plan sponsor is not mandated to provide them. PLEASE check with your employer or plan sponsor if you have questions.

Mid Year Elections:

Typically, employees make decisions about health care coverage or contributions to health or dependent care tax-advantaged accounts when they first begin a new job or during annual open enrollment. Mid-year changes are normally limited outside of a qualifying life event, such as moving, a new child, marriage, or divorce.

Maybe you had put money aside for child care or summer camps, but these are closed for the summer, Or maybe you had been saving up money for a health procedure, that you are now delaying. 

The new IRS notice allows for mid-year changes to employer-sponsored health care coverage, health care FSAs, and dependent year accounts (if your employer decides to participate) due to the coronavirus. These would all be prospective or forward-looking changes for the rest of 2020.

Employer Sponsored Health Care Coverage:

  1. Make a new election for employer-sponsored health coverage if you initially declined your employer’s offer of coverage

  2. Make changes to your health care coverage (for example electing from single coverage to family coverage)

  3. Revoke coverage if you confirm in writing that you are choosing to get health care coverage elsewhere

Health FSAs:

  1. Revoke an existing election (contributions to the FSA through each paycheck)

  2. Make a new election

  3. Decrease or increase an existing election (would change the amount going to your FSA on future paychecks)

Dependent care assistance programs:

  1. Revoke an existing election (contributions to the account through each paycheck)

  2. Make a new election

  3. Decrease or increase an existing election (would change the amount going to your FSA on future paychecks)

If your employer allows it, employees can also elect to carry-over up to $500 of unused FSA funds to the next year. The new IRS notice increases the allowable rollover amount to $550, if allowed by the employer.

FSA rules also typically allow a grace period to use rolled-over 2019 funds until March 15, 2020. As many doctors and dental offices were not open and many people were delaying non-emergency care, it is likely they were unable to use up 2019 funds by March 15th. The new IRS notice would allow the grace period to be extended to the end of 2020, if allowed by the employer.

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Federal coronavirus-response legislation: click HERE.

Specific actions Kyrsten is taking on behalf of Arizona: click HERE.

Visit our main resources page: sinema.senate.gov/corona.