Most of Washington’s statewide health care related orders issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic will end this October.
On September 8, 2022, Governor Inslee announced that the state of emergency for COVID-19 will be lifted on October 31, 2022. The end to Washington’s state of emergency will terminate 10 emergency orders (including health care related orders) on October 31, 2022, while 13 additional health care related orders are scheduled to terminate on October 27, 2022. These two deadlines will end all of the governor’s emergency proclamations and nearly all of the COVID-19 emergency orders issued for Washington state. Only the Department of Health’s Face Covering Order will remain in effect for health care and long-term settings. These changes will impact health care providers in ways that include:
Health Care Facility Operations
- Certificate of need and facility licensing requirements and regulations. Proclamation 20-36.
- Requirements for the operation of nursing homes and assisted living facilities regarding visitation. Proclamation 20-06.
- Requirements for the operation of long-term care facilities and long-term care. Proclamation No.20-66.6; Proclamation No. 20-52.11.
- Visitation limitations for certain adult psychiatric, commitment, community transition, residential treatment, intermediate care, living alternatives, nursing, assisted living, enhanced facilities and adult family homes. Proclamation 20-16; Proclamation 20-17 (evaluation and treatment facilities and residential treatment facilities only).
- Requirements related to Medicaid assessments for certain residential long-term care facilities. Proclamation 20-18.
- Requirements related to inspections and surveys for certain residential long-term care facilities. Proclamation 20-18.
- Restrictions on non-urgent medial procedures. Proclamation 20-24.4.
- Requirements related to hand sanitizer in health care facilities. Proclamation 20-36.11.
- Requirements for the operations of children’s long-term inpatient programs and residential treatment facilities. Proclamation No. 74.4.
Training and Certification of Health Care Workers
- Requirements for long-term care workers in adult family homes. Proclamation 20-10.
- Requirements related to fingerprint checks of certain long-term care workers. Proclamation 20-18.
- Administrative licensing for health care workers. Proclamation 20-32.12.
- Temporary practice permits for health care workers. Proclamation 20-59.9.
- Requirements for long-term care workers, facilities, and resources. Proclamation No. 20-65.6.
- Vaccination mandates for health care workers. Proclamation 21-14.5; Proclamation 21-14.4.
Health care facilities and health care workers may need to implement changes in anticipation of the expiration of these orders. Affected health care facilities should review their current policies and processes, including any temporary processes or policies which were implemented in response to the emergency orders, and develop plans to ensure the health care facility’s compliance after the emergency orders have ended. For additional information and the status of specific orders, see the Proclamations-Office of the Governor online at https://www.governor.wa.gov/office-governor/official-actions/proclamations.
This update is a summary of a complex topic that is subject to change at any time and should not be relied upon in lieu of legal advice. If you have any questions or require guidance, please contact Lee Kuo, Madeleine Haller, or Adriana Lein.