Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources


COVID-19 Testing & Treatment

Federal law requires that all private insurance plans cover coronavirus testing without deductibles, coinsurance, or co-pays. Insurers also have to cover fees for visits to the ER, an urgent care center, or a doctor’s office associated with getting a test without cost sharing.

La ley federal requiere que todos los planes de seguro privado cubran las pruebas de coronavirus sin deducibles, coseguros o copagos. Las aseguradoras también tienen que cubrir las tarifas para las visitas a la sala de urgencias, un centro de atención de urgencias o un consultorio médico asociado con la obtención de una prueba sin costo compartido.


A list of all testing sites in TN by county can be found here.

Treatment Coverage: (As of October 27, 2020)

  • BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee: Members diagnosed with COVID-19 will not have to pay any out-of-pocket costs for testing and treatment administered through in-network providers, including at a doctor’s office, urgent care facility, and emergency room, as well as related inpatient hospital stays, through the end of the COVID-19 national emergency.
  • Cigna: Will waive consumer costs associated with COVID-19 treatment through January 21, 2021. This policy applies to customers in the United States who are covered under Cigna's employer/union sponsored insured group health plans, self-insured group health plans, insured plans for US based globally mobile individuals, Medicare Advantage, and Individual and Family Plans (IFP). Cigna will also administer the waiver.
  • Humana: Will waive consumer costs related to treatment and any FDA-approved medications or vaccines when they become available for COVID-19. This applies to enrollees of Medicare Advantage plans, fully insured commercial members, Medicare Supplement, and Medicaid. There is no current end date.
  • Aetna/CVS Health company: Will waive member cost-sharing for inpatient admissions for treatment of COVID-19 or health complications associated with COVID-19. This policy applies to all Aetna-insured commercial plan sponsors and is effective immediately for any such admission through December 31, 2020.

Assistance with Basic Needs

Both the State of Tennessee and Metro Nashville awarded grants to local nonprofits to provide funding for basic needs like rent/mortgage assistance, help paying for utilities, buying food, emergency cash assistance and more.  For more information about what type of funding you may be eligible for and how to access these funds, call the United Way’s 24-hour resource and referral line by dialing 2-1-1 or 800-318-9335 or visiting

Food Assistance

Many people in our community and around the country are now experiencing food insecurity. Here is a list of programs through which individuals and families may apply for food assistance.

Second Harvest Food Bank

Food box and food pantry sites available throughout Middle Tennessee, including Cheatham, Davidson and Dickson counties. Click here to use your county or your zip code to find food available near you. Call to confirm before you visit as schedules may change.

Mid-Cumberland Community Action Agency can provide food assistance for Cheatham Co. residents. Contact 615.792.3632 for assistance or visit

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
If you need help buying groceries due to Coronavirus (COVID-19), apply for SNAP assistance. Current SNAP households that already receive the maximum monthly allotment are not eligible for increases. All Emergency Allotments will be delivered on current SNAP households’ EBT cards.

Apply for SNAP benefits here. Frequently Asked Questions about SNAP benefits can be found here.

Muchas personas en nuestra comunidad y en todo el país están experimentando inseguridad alimentaria. Aquí hay una lista de programas a través de los cuales las personas y las familias pueden solicitar asistencia alimentaria.

Si necesita ayuda para comprar alimentos debido a Coronavirus (COVID-19), solicite asistencia a el programa SNAP. Los hogares que ya reciben la asignación mensual máxima de SNAP no son elegibles para aumentos. Todas las asignaciones de emergencia se entregará en las tarjetas EBT.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)/Families First
Families First, the state’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, is a workforce development and employment program. The Families First program emphasizes work, training, and personal responsibility. It is temporary and has a primary focus on gaining self-sufficiency through employment. The Families First program helps participants reach this goal by providing temporary cash assistance, transportation, childcare assistance, educational supports, job training, employment activities, and other support services. 

Check eligibility requirements here.
Apply for TANF/Families First benefits here.

Emergency Cash Assistance: The application cycle for Emergency Cash Assistance ended on August 29, 2020.

Tennessee Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program
To be eligible for WIC, you must be pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum, or an infant or child up to five years old and determined to be at nutrition risk. In order to qualify, participants’ household gross income must be equal to or less than 185% of Federal poverty. You may automatically be eligible for WIC by showing proof of participation in SNAP, TANF or TennCare. This WIC PreScreening Tool can assist you in determining whether or not you are eligible. All WIC services and appointments are being conducted by phone.

Call your local county health department for more information or to apply.

Programa de Mujeres, Infantes y Niños de Tennessee (WIC)
Para ser elegible para WIC, usted debe estar embarazada, amamantando y posparto, o un bebé o niño de hasta cinco años de edad y se determina que está en riesgo de nutrición. Para calificar, el ingreso bruto de los hogares de los participantes debe ser igual o inferior al 185% de la pobreza federal. Usted puede ser elegible automáticamente para WIC mostrando una prueba de participación en SNAP, TANF o TennCare. Esta Herramienta de Preselección de WIC puede ayudarle a determinar si usted es elegible o no. Todos los servicios y citas de WIC se llevan a cabo por teléfono.

School Meals
Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) continue to offer no-cost breakfast and lunch to all children 18 and under (even if they do not attend a MNPS school). Meals can be picked up at any bus stop location or at any MNPS school Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  School pickup times are 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and bus stop delivery times are between 10 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. Times and locations can be found here.

Under a new Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) program, families of children who receive free or reduced-price meals at school may be eligible to receive financial assistance for school meals that were missed during COVID-19 school closures. The program will provide parents with $5.70 per child for each day that child qualifies for P-EBT. 

  • March - May – Funds were added directly to EBT cards for families who receive SNAP or Families First benefits. Families who applied through the State of Tennessee Department of Human Services by the August 14 deadline should have already received a new EBT card by mail. Eligible families who do not receive SNAP or TANF/Families First benefits, and who did not apply through the State of Tennessee, will be contacted by their child’s school and will receive an EBT card for each eligible child either by mail or by picking it up in person.
  • August - Present – An application is not required. EBT cards for each eligible child will be sent directly to families by mail.
  • If you think your child or children may be eligible, but you did not receive a card(s), contact

Nonprofit Assistance

The Mayor’s COVID-19 Response Fund, in partnership with the United Way of Greater Nashville, is allocating funding to community-based organizations that have experience with and history of providing people and families with services and support. Priority will be given to organizations providing rent/mortgage, utilities, food and other direct financial assistance. Learn more about eligibility and apply for funding here.

Assistance for Specific Industries

Some industries have funding available for specific jobs like bartenders (also here), filmmakers, licensed beauty professionals, musicians (also here) and restaurant workers.  

Unemployment Assistance

Tennessee Unemployment Compensation (TUC) pays up to $275/week to eligible Tennesseans. To qualify for TUC, you must meet basic eligibility requirements including certifying that you lost your job through no fault of your own and that you are available to return to work or accept suitable employment if offered. If you fail to return to work or accept suitable work when offered, you are no longer eligible for unemployment benefits. The work search waiver has expired, and work searches are again required to retain Unemployment benefits. Unemployment FAQs can be found here.

The additional $600/week Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation from the federal government and the additional $400/week from President Trump’s Executive Order have both expired.

Be aware that there are serious backlogs due to the demand for this assistance. Don’t get discouraged. Keep trying. 

Apply for unemployment benefits here.

Who is eligible for unemployment insurance under the CARES Act but not traditionally eligible for unemployment? 
Self-employed workers, independent contractors and gig economy workers are typically not eligible for unemployment insurance, but they are now eligible through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program for a maximum of 39 weeks. So are part-time workers, and people with limited work histories. You must have a social security number to receive benefits. You aren’t eligible if you voluntarily left your job, but most people – due to this crisis – have been involuntarily separated from their work. This program is scheduled to end December 26, 2020. PUA claimants are not eligible for Extended Benefits (EB).

How long am I eligible for unemployment insurance benefits?
TUC provides a maximum of 26 weeks of benefits per benefit year. The CARES Act provides eligible claimants up to an additional 13 weeks of unemployment after exhausting benefits in the TUC program through the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program. PEUC is scheduled to expire December 26, 2020. The Extended Benefits (EB) program provides eligible Tennesseans up to 13 weeks of additional unemployment after exhausting benefits in both the TUC and PEUC programs. PUA claimants (self-employed, contractors, gig workers etc.) are not eligible for Extended Benefits.

To obtain the additional weeks of benefits provided through PEUC or EB, claimants must file a new claim by logging into​ Please note, this is considered a new claim and could take several weeks to process, delaying your benefit payments.

Do unemployment insurance payments count as income?
Yes, and they are taxable.

Do I have to be “laid off” to get unemployment insurance payments?
No, but your separation from your job must be involuntary. So, if you are a self-employed musician, you haven’t laid yourself off, but all of your gigs have been cancelled, so you qualify.

IRS Economic Impact Payments/Stimulus Checks

Many Americans are running out of cash to pay their bills. 

Most eligible people, including Social Security and SSI recipients, should have already received their Economic Impact Payments via direct deposit. This includes individuals making $75,000 or less ($150,000 couples filing jointly) who received a $1,200 check and qualifying families will received an additional $500 for each dependent child under 17.

If you have not received your check, and you did not file taxes in 2018 or 2019, you may need register with the IRS. The deadline for non-filers to register is November 21, 2020. Visit this site to fill out the payment information to ensure you receive their stimulus payment as soon as possible.

Any SS/SSI recipients or disabled veterans with dependents should visit this visit this site by November 21, 2020, and fill out the information so the IRS is aware of your dependents. Failure to do so means you will not receive an extra $500 per child payment this year. Instead, it will need to be claimed on next year’s taxes.

For those who file taxes, the IRS launched a new Get My Payment App. The App is free and allows taxpayers who filed their 2018 or 2019 tax return to track the status of your stimulus payment. It also allows you to enter your direct deposit information if the IRS does not already have it on file. (It may not be used just to change your direct deposit information, such as routing to a different bank.) 

Read more about the stimulus payments here and here. Track your stimulus payment here. Contact the IRS directly at: 1-800-919-9835.

If you received duplicative payments, steps to return the payment can be found here.

Assistance with Wireless/Internet Access

Lots of Tennesseans do not have internet access, which makes it almost impossible to “work from home,” even if they have a job that would allow that. It also makes it hard for students who suddenly need to receive instruction online.

Several broadband resources are available at little-to-no cost while the COVID-19 health crisis continues. Find available resources here.

Assistance for Small Business Owners

This is a very difficult time for small businesses, the backbone of our nation’s economy. Here are ways that small business owners can get help.

Este es un momento muy difícil para las pequeñas empresas, la columna vertebral de la economía de nuestra nación. Estas son las maneras en que los dueños de pequeñas empresas pueden obtener ayuda.

The State of Tennessee’s Supplemental Employer Recovery Grant (SERG) program is a program for small businesses that have annual gross receipts up to $10,000,000 and nonprofits for direct expenses or business interruption costs from May 1, 2020 through August 31, 2020. The application window is open from October 7, 2020 - December 29, 2020, or until all funds are depleted. Ten percent of all funds distributed under this program are designated for eligible diversity business enterprises, classified as minority business enterprises, women business enterprises, or service-disabled veteran business enterprises, and enterprises owned by disabled persons. Funds are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. More information can be found here.

Metro Nashville’s Small Business Grants are available for small businesses (not including nonprofits) that have annual gross receipts between $35,000 and $1,000,000 to cover operating expenses like payroll, lease or rental expenses, utilities, insurance and other general expenses between September 3, 2020 and November 15, 2020. Thirty percent of the total grant fund is designated for minority-owned businesses. Funds are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. More information can be found here and here.

Metro Nashville’s Live Music Venue Grants are available for live music venues with annual receipts up to $5,000,000. Grants provide two months of operating expenses (excluding payroll) up to $100,000. Funds are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. More information can be found here and here.

Metro Nashville’s Renew Nashville is a partnership with local organizations, the Nashville Entrepreneur Center, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, the Nashville Business Incubation Center, Conexión Américas and Pathway Lending, to provide free master-class resources, executive level advisors, and the support of the city’s largest business network to participating small businesses and entrepreneurs to help them adjust to a changing environment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. More information can be found here.  

The Small Business Administration guide includes a list of SBA-approved lenders, Women’s Business Centers, and Veterans Business Outreach Centers, and can be found here. For more information about all small business resources, please click here. You can always contact the U.S. Small Business Administration in Nashville at 615-736-5881.

Be aware that there are serious backlogs due to the demand for this assistance. Don’t get discouraged. Keep trying.

Economic Injury Disaster Loans
SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance. EIDLs may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.

Apply here.

Emergency Economic Injury Grants
The EIDL Advance grant program is no longer available.

Paycheck Protection Program
The application period for the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) has ended.

Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program
SBA Express Bridge Loans allow small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 in loans quickly. These loans can help businesses overcome the temporary loss of revenue and can be used to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA EIDL. If a small business has an urgent need for cash while waiting for a decision and disbursement of an EIDL, they may qualify for an SBA Express Disaster Bridge Loan. It will be repaid in full or in part by proceeds from the EIDL.

For more information on eligibility requirements and how to apply, click here.  

SBA Debt Relief
For all current SBA 7(a), 504, and Microloans, the SBA will pay 6 months of principal, interest, and any associated fees that borrowers owe in regular servicing status, as well as new 7(a), 504, and Microloans disbursed prior to September 27, 2020. This relief is not available for PPP loans or EIDL. Borrowers do not need to apply for this assistance. It is automatically provided under certain circumstances.

For more information on eligibility requirements, please click here.

Payroll Tax Credit
A new $10,000 per employee retention payroll tax credit is available to any business or non-profit that has a furloughed or reduced workforce as a result of a forced closure due to a federal, state, or local government directive or as a result of quarantining of employees. The credit would also be available to any business that has seen a 50% drop in gross receipts. The credit would be available to businesses that do not receive SBA loans.

More details here.

Payroll Tax Delay
Companies may defer the 6.2% Social Security tax on all wages up to $137,700 for the rest of the year, though they will have to pay it back in equal installments in 2021 and 2022. Deferral is not provided to employers that avail themselves of SBA 7(a) loans designated for payroll.

The U.S. Small Business Administration provides a resource guide for Tennessee businesses. The guide, which includes a list of SBA-approved lenders, Women’s Business Centers, and Veterans Business Outreach Centers, can be found here. For more information about all small business resources, please click here. You can also call the U.S. Small Business Administration in Nashville at 615-736-5881.

Additional information for small businesses may be found through the U.S. Chamber of Commerce website here.

Approved SBA lenders in Middle Tennessee

Cheatham County
Heritage Bank
Sam Bancroft
(615) 792-8005 

Pinnacle Bank
Larry Roberts
(615) 743-8330

US Bank
Marianne Isbell
(615) 792-5185

Davidson County
Bank of America
Derek Grayson
(404) 607-4351

Bank of Tennessee
Tim Mann
(615) 321-9242

Branch Banking and Trust Co.
Laurie Sullivan
(615) 460-7739

CapStar Bank
Tom Stewart
(615) 732-7386

Citizens Savings Bank and Trust Co.
Clint Story
(615) 327-0016

Enbright Credit Union
Ken DuBray
(615) 687-4801

First Citizens Bank
Ellyn Jansen
(615) 744-4811

First Farmers & Merchants Bank
Berry Brooks
(615) 279-5214

Fifth Third Bank
Christy Lane
(615) 687-3115

First Advantage Bank
(615) 690-7292

First Tennessee Bank
Thomas King
(615) 327-1870

Legends Bank
Naaman Stillwell
(615) 372-1760

Mid-Cumberland Area Development Corp.
Gwen Schaefer
(615) 862-8831

Pathway Lending
Pam Theis
(615) 425-7171

Pinnacle Bank
Lane Rhodes
(615) 969-2848

Republic Bank
John Bennett
(615) 690-9590

Regions Bank
Courtney Crants
(615) 748-8423

Renasant Bank
Jim Gardner
(615) 340-3000

Simmons Bank
Eli Blattner
(865) 291-1931

SunTrust Bank
(615) 748-5105

Blair Smyly
(615) 271-2041

US Bank
Tyler Ryan
(615) 386-2220

Wells Fargo Bank
Brandon Butler
(615) 661-4836

Dickson County
Regions Bank
Joyce Norman
(800) 734-4667

US Bank
Micah McAllister
(615) 740-1800

Pinnacle Bank
Lorrie Pruett
(615) 740-8240

First Farmers & Merchants Bank
Debra Duke
(615) 797-3153

Additional Small Business Resource Centers

There are several local resource centers that can help provide counseling, training, and guidance, to small businesses. A list of those can be found here:

Nashville SCORE
(615) 736-7621
(844) 726-7322

Pathway Women’s Business Center Pathway WBC
Director Courenty Rogers
(615) 425-7171

Veterans Business Resource Center
Director Reggie Ordonez
(615) 425-7171

Nashville SBDC
Tennessee State University
Director John Ordung:
Small Business Specialist Greg Jones:
Small Business Specialist Thomas Tate:
(615) 963-7179
(615) 963-7158
Fax (615) 963-7160

IRS Tax Assistance Center:
(615) 250-5640

Assistance for Small and Mid-Sized Businesses

The Federal Reserve has unveiled details for its Main Street New Loan Facility. Loans are available to companies with up to 10,000 workers or with revenues of less than $2.5 billion. Loans ranging from $1 million to $25 million and are available for four-year terms. Principal and interest payments will be deferred for one year. Businesses seeking Main Street loans must commit to making reasonable efforts to maintain payroll and retain workers. Borrowers must also follow compensation, stock repurchase, and dividend restrictions that apply to direct loan programs under the CARES Act. Businesses that have taken advantage of the PPP may also take out Main Street loans.

Read more about the Main Street New Loan Facility here.

Health Coverage Assistance

Americans 65 years or older get their health coverage through Medicare. Very low-income Americans get their health coverage through Medicaid.

Most other Americans get their health coverage through their employer or on the Obamacare exchanges made possible through the Affordable Care Act. Given the record job losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, countless Americans will lose their health insurance when they lose their job.

This section attempts to explain options that might apply to those who have suddenly lost their health insurance.

Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment

Starting November 1, consumers can log in to and or call 1-800-318-2596 to fill out an application and enroll in a 2021 Exchange health plan or update your current plan. The Federal Health Insurance Exchange 2021 Open Enrollment Period is November 1, 2020 to December 15, 2020, with coverage beginning on January 1, 2021.  


If you lost job-based coverage but your family still has some income:

You can qualify for a special enrollment period (SEP) to buy insurance on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces. Coverage is subsidized on a sliding scale according to income, and there are several choices of plans in most markets. Visit to see your options.

If you lost job-based coverage but would like to keep it:

You can keep your coverage for as long as 18 months under COBRA. However, you can only keep it if you’re willing to pay as much as the total amount of your premium — both what you normally pay and what your employer contributed. Contact your employer if you are interested. Apply for COBRA here.

You currently buy Obamacare insurance, but are making less money than usual:

The subsidies people get for insurance in the Obamacare marketplace are calculated at the beginning of the year, based on estimated income for that year. But if your income changes, you can go back to the marketplace and adjust it here.

You recently lost your job and need health coverage, but your income is close to zero:

You may be able to qualify for TennCare, Tennessee’s Medicaid program if you are uninsured, pregnant, a child under age 19, a parent or relative caretaker of a dependent child(ren) under age 21, disabled, elderly, and/or meet the financial eligibility criteria. Your child may qualify for coverage even if you don’t.You should go directly to TennCare Connect or to check your Medicaid eligibility.

Do you need help applying for TennCare? There are four ways that you can get help:

  • Call TennCare Connect at 855-259-0701 to get help over the phone. You can get help from private groups. Find someone near you. You can also call 1-866-475-7879 or the Marketplace at 1-800-318-2596 to apply directly over the phone.

  • If you have a disability, call your local Area Agency on Aging and Disability (AAAD) at 1-866-836-6678.

  • Go-to website for Tennessee disability resources: Tennessee Disability Pathfinder COVID-19 page.

  • Tennessee Disability Pathfinder is also prepared to take calls for disability-related questions, including through their multi-cultural program: 800-640-4636.

Housing Assistance

The CDC has issued an order to suspend evictions for renters due to the impacts of COVID-19 through the end of 2020. In order to be eligible, you must meet a five-pronged test certifying that you have attempted to obtain government rental assistance, you do not earn more than $99,000 per year, you are experiencing a substantial loss of income or have been laid off, you have attempted to make rental payments as best you can, and eviction would likely lead to homelessness. Renters must submit the CDC’s declaration form to your landlord to prove that you are eligible for the eviction moratorium. Here is an interactive tool to assist in determining individual and household eligibility.

For more information on the CDC eviction moratorium, please click here.

Assistance for Veterans

Many Veterans – always feeling the call to serve – want to help again in our nation’s time of need.

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) approved a request from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to waive a section of federal law that governs retired VA workers. The waiver makes it easier for the department to rehire retired VA health care workers and will help VA health care facilities bolster their medical staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Retired VA clinicians who are interested in coming back to VA can register here. OPM’s waiver authority expires after one year.

Veterans who use in-home care, prosthetics services, or need or lack internet or computer access to conduct telehealth appointments, contact your local VA facility or send a secure message to your provider on My HealtheVet. For more information about what to do if you are a veteran in need click here. You can also always contact my office at (615) 736-5295.

Paid Family & Sick Leave Assistance

Nearly every American is feeling the pain of lost income, and many do not have paid family leave or paid sick leave with their jobs. New federal laws address this problem for many workers.

Who is eligible?
Employees at businesses that employ less than 500 people and are affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The Department of Labor issued guidance stating that the paid leave provisions are effective on April 1, 2020, and apply to leave taken between April 1, 2020, and December 31, 2020.

As a business owner, what do I need to provide?
If you are a business owner who employs 50-500 people, you must provide paid family and sick leave to employees.

  • Eligible full-time employees and part-time employees are entitled to 12 weeks of job-protected leave to take care of a family member due to COVID-19 or for their children in the event of a school closure.
    • The 12 weeks of job-protected leave include two weeks of unpaid leave, followed by 10 weeks of paid leave. Eligible employees may elect or be required to overlap the initial two weeks of unpaid leave with two weeks of other paid leave they have available. Eligible employees will receive a benefit from their employers that will be no less than two-thirds of the employee’s usual pay.
    • Employers will be fully reimbursed by the federal government through a payroll tax credit.
  • Eligible full-time and part-time employees are eligible for two weeks of paid sick leave (up to $511 per day) to seek treatment of COVID-19, or two weeks of paid leave (up to $200 per day) to care for a family member or child whose school has closed due to COVID-19.
    • Employers will be fully reimbursed by the federal government through a payroll tax credit.

If I employ less than 50 people, is my business exempt from providing paid leave?
No, employees at these companies must provide emergency paid sick leave under this bill. Businesses with fewer than 50 employees can only qualify for a narrow exemption if the Department of Labor determines that providing these benefits would jeopardize the viability of the business.

Am I eligible for paid leave if I am self-employed?
Yes. People who are self-employed but work for another employer are eligible for a tax credit of up to two weeks of sick pay at their average pay and 12 weeks of family leave pay at two-thirds their normal rate. The tax credit can be applied against a person’s quarterly estimated income tax payments and it is refundable.

Where can I find more information?
For more information about family and sick leave, please read:

Fact Sheet for Employees

Fact Sheet for Employers

Frequently Asked Questions

Assistance for Federal Student Loan Holders

Federally-held student loan payments have been suspended until December 31, 2020. Borrowers can defer payments without interest for 60 days but must contact their loan service providers to trigger deferment.

Deductions for Charitable Contributions

A new, above-the-line deduction for charitable contributions has been made available. Taxpayers may deduct up to $300 for their contributions made to charity in 2020 on their federal tax form, regardless of whether they itemize their deductions.


Tax-free reimbursement of feminine hygiene products is also allowed from health savings accounts (HSAs), health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), health flexible spending accounts (health FSAs), and Archer medical savings accounts (Archer MSAs).

Helping Locally

Tennesseans can provide a critical supply need by donating blood. Red Cross blood donation locations can be found here.

Trained medical volunteers can offer their services by registering with a National VOAD member on

To sell or donate medical supplies or equipment to the federal government, visit here. Businesses can register for free through the System for Award Management (SAM) website and email all information to

If you were diagnosed and have recovered from Coronavirus (COVID-19), you can donate plasma to help current patients. Sign up here. While it is highly unlikely that you could become re-infected this season, it is important to remain vigilant. There is a lot that is still unknown about COVID-19.

FAQ’s About Federal Assistance

For a guide to understanding the CARES Act with Frequently Asked Questions click here.

U.S. Travel Advisories

The U.S. Department of State advises all U.S. citizens to read the country-specific travel advisories and the U.S. Embassy COVID pages for updates on the impact of COVID-19 worldwide. The CDC has extended its No Sail Order for all cruise ships through September.

For more information, please click here.

Passport Operations

The U.S. Department of State significantly reduced passport operations in March 2020 but is slowly ramping back up. As of Monday, September 8, there are 11 passport agencies and centers in phase two of reopening and 15 agencies in phase one of reopening. Passport agencies and centers are only open to assist customers who need a passport in the next 72 hours or a life-or-death emergency.