Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra signed the latest extension of the PHE designation. This extension, which is set to expire January 11, 2023, marks the continuation of several temporary authorities afforded under the PHE. Read a summary outlining the Medicare- and Medicaid-specific flexibilities afforded under the COVID-19 PHE.
The public health emergency was initially declared in January 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic began. It has been renewed each quarter since and was due to expire on October 15, 2022.
HHS said that the Biden Administration will give states 60 days' notice prior to termination or expiration. It has been speculated that this may be the last extension of the PHE.
This renewal extends the wide array of waivers and flexibilities that have been issued by HHS in response to COVID-19, including the scale-up of telehealth visits, emergency approval of new drugs and tests, and new flexibility for government-run health insurance programs.
The Ohio Department of Medicaid recently released a COVID-19 Unwinding page, which includes materials and templates for stakeholders and partners to help prepare Medicaid members for the end of the public health emergency (PHE) and any actions they need to take.