The federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) extended the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) public health emergency on January 7, 2021. With this fourth renewal, the public health emergency will cover another 90 days, lasting into April 2021. Continuing the public health emergency has crucial implications for health care professionals related to telehealth, Medicare and Medicaid blanket waivers, and interim final rule policies.
The extension reads: “As a result of the continued consequences of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, on this date and after consultation with public health officials as necessary, I, Alex M. Azar II, Secretary of Health and Human Services, pursuant to the authority vested in me under section 319 of the Public Health Service Act, do hereby renew, effective January 21, 2021, my January 31, 2020, determination that I previously renewed on April 21, 2020, July 23, 2020, and October 2, 2020, that a public health emergency exists and has existed since January 27, 2020, nationwide.”
This was announced by HHS on January 7, 2021.
Contact information: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, 200 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, District of Columbia 20201; 877-696-6775; Website: www.hhs.gov