Ivey extends limited COVID-19 health emergency to Oct. 31 – WIAT – CBS42.com

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey has extended through the end of the month a COVID-19 state of emergency that relaxes some health care regulations.

The order was scheduled to expire Tuesday.

Ivey first ordered the limited, narrowly-focused state of emergency on Aug. 12, when a surge caused by the delta variant of the coronavirus and by Alabamas low vaccination rate was rising. The order was aimed at helping hospitals adjust to the caseload from the virus, al.comreported.

Alabamas case numbers and hospitalizations began to decline a few weeks later. The total number of patients in Alabama hospitals with COVID-19 fell under 1,000 on Friday, the first time its been that low since July. The number of newly reported cases per day in Alabama has dropped more than 70% since early September, the governors office said.

Despite that, the governors proclamation Friday said the pandemic persists and continues to present a serious threat to public health, taxing Alabama hospitals, many of which were already struggling to staff their facilities.

The proclamation relaxes some regulations to help allow expanded capacity in healthcare facilities, additional liability protections, increased authority for frontline health care personnel, and easier shipment of emergency equipment and supplies, the governors office said. It also allows out-of-state doctors, nurses, and pharmacists to practice in Alabama under expedited licenses or temporary permits.

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Ivey extends limited COVID-19 health emergency to Oct. 31 - WIAT - CBS42.com

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