INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Eric Holcomb may be closer to declaring an end to the public health emergency spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The governor has renewed the public health emergency on a month-to-month basis during the ongoing pandemic. Holcomb said the renewal made sure the state received federal funds related to coronavirus relief.
When he extended the public health emergency for November, he suggested that his COVID-19 executive orders may be “scaled down” in the coming months.
In a statement released Tuesday, the governor said there are three key areas that “must be preserved” if the state can responsibly allow the public health emergency to expire. He plans to work with the legislature to consider making three statutory changes:
- Allow for the continuation of enhanced federal matching funds for Medicaid expenditures
- Allow for the continuation of the enhanced benefit for those receiving federal food assistance
- Extend the ability to efficiently vaccinate 5- to 11-year-olds
Those changes, the governor said, would allow him to wind down the state public health emergency in a responsible manner.
Here is the governor’s statement:
When extending the last state public health emergency for another 30 days, I asked my team to bring me a plan that would allow us to wind it down responsibly. They have presented me a plan that identifies three key items that must be preserved if I am to responsibly allow the state public health emergency to expire.
To carry this out, I am working with Senator Bray and Speaker Huston to consider passing three key statutory changes to continue protecting Hoosiers by allowing for the continuation of enhanced federal matching funds for Medicaid expenditures, the continuation of the enhanced benefit for those receiving federal food assistance and extend the ability to efficiently vaccinate our 5- to 11-year-olds.