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WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 16: An ambulance sits parked on the plaza outside the U.S. Capitol March 16, 2020 in Washington, DC. After taking the weekend off, the Senate will return on Monday afternoon and will take up the House-passed coronavirus relief bill. The legislation in the House bill includes some provisions for paid emergency leave and free COVID-19 testing. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

HHS releases first $30 billion to help U.S. health care system

WASHINGTON — The federal Health and Human Services department says it’s releasing the first $30 billion in grants provided by the stimulus bill to help keep the U.S. health care system operating during the coronavirus outbreak.

Congress provided $100 billion for the health care system in the $2 trillion stimulus bill.

Officials say the relief funds will go to hospitals and doctors through Medicare and will be based on their billings to the program last year. Hospitals are supposed to use some of the money to cover COVID-19 treatment for the uninsured, although an independent study earlier this week suggests it may not be enough.

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