COVID-19 Shelter in Place and Related Orders

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Article | May 6, 2020

On March 19, CHPA and several other medical products organizations sent a letter to governors highlighting the need to consider healthcare operations when making decisions about “shelter in place policies” that seek to limit the spread of the virus by keeping people in their homes.

The letter includes the following model language:

For purposes of this Order, individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain services at any “Healthcare Operations” including hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, companies and institutions involved in the research and development, manufacture, distribution, warehousing, and supplying of pharmaceuticals, biotechnology therapies, consumer health products, medical devices, diagnostics, equipment, services and any other healthcare related supplies or services. This shall be broadly construed to include all other activities, supplies, and services required to maintain supply chain operations without disruption. “Healthcare Operations” does not include fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities.

On March 28th, the Department of Homeland Security published updated guidance identifying critical infrastructure employees.  Food and pharmaceutical logistics and manufacturing functions are included. CHPA joined a business community coalition urging states to adopt the DHS critical infrastructure guidelines.

CHPA will continue to monitor state and local orders for healthcare related workforce and logistics disruptions as they are announced. The National Association of Counties is tracking county level declarations here. The Council on State Governments is maintaining a list of all state COVID-19 related orders here. The National League of Cities is tracking additional municipal orders.