Gov. Inslee rescinds 12 emergency decrees related to COVID-19

Gov. Jay Inslee has rescinded 12 decrees under his COVID-19 emergency authority, saying they are no longer needed in response to the pandemic.

The proclamations are related to certain health care facilities such as hospitals, long-term care facilities and health care professionals, of which flexibility was made to statutes related to training, testing and the certification of various health care workers.

The rescissions apply to proclamations 20-52, which incorporate several decrees, and eight others proclamations, which are separately listed.

According to the state, while COVID-19 still persists and is easily spreadable, the measures the state has taken to save lives and reduce infections with the help of vaccines and other medicines have made a glidepath for licensed workers to return to normal compliance.

For example, during the early stages of the pandemic, a decree was issued to prohibit all hospitals, ambulatory surgical facilities, dental orthodontic and endodontic offices in the state from providing most non-urgent procedures, but that changes with the rescissions.

To assure health care providers and facilities have a fair amount of time to transition to pre-COVID laws, the rescissions will take effect on Oct. 27, which is around 90 days.

According to the governor’s office, the Department of Health and the Department of Social and Health Services will provide technical help for all facilities to move into compliance.

For added support, the state will provide approximately $22 million to maintain contracted health care staff statewide and support patients transitioning to community-based services.

According to a release from the governor’s office, “Some of those funds will be used to support Harborview Medical Center in its efforts to secure community-based care for patients with complex medical and behavioral needs.”

Once the rescissions take effect, 87% of all COVID-19 emergency decrees issued in Washington will have been rescinded, according to the state.