The United States is Leading the Humanitarian and Health Assistance Response to COVID-19

Office of the Spokesperson

March 27, 2020


The United States is Leading the Humanitarian and Health Assistance Response to COVID-19

The U.S. Government is leading the world’s humanitarian and health assistance response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are mobilizing all necessary resources to respond rapidly, both at home and abroad. As part of this comprehensive and generous U.S. response, the State Department and USAID are providing an initial investment of nearly $274 million in emergency health and humanitarian assistance to help countries in need, on top of the funding we already provide to multilateral organizations such as the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

This total to date includes nearly $100 million in emergency health assistance from USAID’s Global Health Emergency Reserve Fund and $110 million in humanitarian assistance from USAID’s International Disaster Assistance account, to be provided for up to 64 of the most at-risk countries facing the threat of this global pandemic. Through the State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) will receive $64 million in humanitarian assistance to help address the threats posed by COVID-19 in existing humanitarian crisis situations for some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

U.S. government agencies are working together to prioritize foreign assistance based on coordination and the potential for impact. With today’s new funds, the United States is providing the following specific assistance:


Indonesia:$2.3 million in health assistance will help the government prepare laboratory systems, activate case-finding and event-based surveillance, and support technical experts for response and preparedness, and more. The United States has invested more than $1 billion in health and more than $5 billion in total assistance over the past 20 years.

U.S. investments under the Global Health Security Agenda, including those we have contributed to this global crisis response, are designed to protect the American public by helping to minimize the spread of disease in affected countries and improve local and global responses to outbreaks of infectious pathogens.

This new assistance builds on the United States’ record of leadership in global health and humanitarian assistance. This assistance is part of a larger USG global response package across multiple departments and agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).Since 2009, American taxpayers have generously funded more than$100 billion in health assistance and nearly $70 billion in humanitarian assistance globally. Our country continues to be the single largest health and humanitarian donor for both long-term development and capacity building efforts with partners, and emergency response efforts in the face of recurrent crises. This money has saved lives, protected people who are most vulnerable to disease, built health institutions, and promoted the stability of communities and nations.

For more information on the U.S. government’s holistic funding in response to this crisis, please contact

For details on specific in-country response activities, please contact USAID at

For details on the humanitarian assistance contribution to UNHCR, please contact the State Department’s Bureau for Population, Refugees, and Migration at