Aug 17, 2022 - News

Utah receives $13 million in federal COVID-19 funeral assistance

Illustration of a hand at a vigil holding a candle wrapped in a $100 bill.
Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

Utah has received nearly $13.4 million in federal aid to help individuals and families cover the funeral costs of people who died from COVID-19, according to figures FEMA released this month.

Details: Launched in April 2021, the COVID-19 funeral assistance program was created to help families with the financial burden of laying their loved ones to rest.

  • The assistance covers funeral services, such as cremation, caskets or urns, burial plots, the transfer of remains and markers or headstones.
  • In 2021, a funeral, including viewing, ceremony and burial, in Utah costs about $7,000, according to the National Funeral Directors Association.
  • Eligible applicants can receive up to $9,000 from FEMA.

By the numbers: Of the 2,448 applications started or received from Utah, 1,978 were approved.

Zoom out: Nationally, as of Aug. 1, FEMA has issued $2.7 billion in COVID-19 funeral assistance to more than 420,000 individuals and families.

  • California, New York, and Texas have each received upwards of $200 million in funeral assistance.

Of note: Earlier this year, state officials said they would stop providing daily COVID-19 case counts and instead provide updates on a weekly basis.

  • Health officials are still monitoring for COVID-19 surges through wastewater testing and tracking clinic and emergency room visits.

Qualifications: Those who paid for a funeral of a person "whose death was attributed to COVID-19" on or after Jan. 20, 2020, are eligible for the assistance.

  • The death must have occurred in the U.S.
  • To apply, call 844-684-6333. Multilingual services are provided.
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