INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WEHT) — Governor Eric Holcomb issued a new executive order Monday that provides directives to manage Indiana’s healthcare response to COVID-19.
“We see a surge coming and we’re calling in the reinforcements, bolstering Indiana’s capacity to provide additional health care services during this emergency,” said Gov. Eric J. Holcomb. “By eliminating licensing barriers and tapping in to the available talent pool of healthcare workers, Hoosiers are staffing up and stepping up to meet this challenge head-on.”
The executive order allows the following professionals who do not currently hold an active license to practice:
- medical professionals who retired or became inactive in the last five years
- medical professionals who hold licenses in other states
- medical professionals who held licenses in other states and retired or became inactive in the last five years
- certain medical students and graduates
These professionals must register with the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency via their website at www.in.gov/pla. These professionals will be able to assist in screenings, telemedicine and other basic procedures to allow regularly licensed medical professionals to be on the frontline.
Indiana’s baseline number of critical care hospital beds is 1,432 and the baseline number of ventilators is at 1,177. As of Monday, Holcomb says hospitals have taken steps to increase the number of critical care beds to 1,940 and identified another 750 ventilators for critical care patients.
The state plans to double both numbers if needed by taking existing beds and re-purposing ventilators from various places.
Additionally, the surge plan calls for moving less critical patients to alternate facilities including neighborhood hospitals, medical clinics and state-owned hospitals, such as unopened floors at the NeuroDiagnostic Institute hospital in Indianapolis and the Richmond State Hospital.
If needed, after all of these steps are exhausted, Indiana will be prepared to put patients in alternative facilities. The Indiana National Guard and Department of Homeland Security, in conjunction with FEMA, are in charge of these plans.
Based on projected impact models, the state says Indiana’s patient surge is expected to begin soon and the peak is expected to be mid-April to mid-May.
To view past executive orders from Holcomb, click here.