Health Law Weekly

On January 31, 2020, then-Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar declared the COVID-19 pandemic a Public Health Emergency (PHE).1 Since then, the PHE has been renewed continuously for 90-day extensions, including the latest extension on July 15, 2022, by current HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra that extended the PHE to October 13, 2022.2

HHS has not formally communicated how much longer it will maintain the PHE past October, but has reiterated its commitment to state governors to provide a 60-day notice of termination or expiration of the PHE. Therefore, if HHS intends to curtail the PHE before October 13, 2022, it will have to give that notice by August 15, 2022. Providers should prepare for the inevitable end of the PHE.

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  1. U.S. Dep’t of Health & Human Servs., Public Health Emergency 
  2. HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR)