Federal Agencies’ Spending on COVID-19 Contracts Cools

Budget Federal spending

Federal agencies’ total spend for COVID-19-related purchases has cooled in the past month, decreasing by over $1 billion due to changed contract awards, according to data obtained from the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS).

On June 8, FPDS data showed $15.5 billion worth of COVID-19 related contracts entered into by Federal agencies since February. On July 6, nearly a month later, FPDS data shows the total spend at $14.1 billion, with over 1,400 transactions entered into the database with negative dollar amounts.

The transactions with negative dollar amounts come from changed transactions and modifications of original contracts.

For example, on April 3, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) signed a contract for $33.2 million of personal protective equipment (PPE) N95 masks. A little over two months later, on June 17, VA modified the contract to a $3.9 million award – reducing its value by over $29 million.

Federal agencies – which had 25,588 COVID-19 related contracts entered into the FPDS as of June 8 – are now up to roughly 30,000 contracts. While the overall number of contracts has increased, none of the new contracts recorded in the past month has been worth more than $100 million. That compares to 22 deals worth more than $100 million each during the period from February to early June.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has accounted for over half of the total amount spent by Federal agencies. In over 2,000 COVID-19 related contracts since March, the department has spent over $9 billion. The VA has made over 4,300 transactions in the same period, for a total of $1.9 billion.

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