Triadvocates Navigator Special Edition (March 26, 2020)

March 26,2020 | TRIADVOCATES


March 26, 2020


The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a flood of executive orders from Gov. Doug Ducey as public health officials seek to contain the virus before sick patients overwhelm the health care system in Arizona. From telemedicine coverage to a suspension of residential tenant evictions, the executive orders cover a wide range of issues that continue to expand as further action becomes necessary.


Over the past two weeks, there has been a constant stream of critically important information. We know it has been overwhelming and challenging to digest every update, so we've condensed it all into a quick rundown on each of the executive orders and significant announcements from the Governor’s Office.

Here's everything you need to know:


Executive Orders


State of Emergency: On March 11, Gov. Ducey issued a declaration of emergency and an executive order providing health officials and administrators with tools and guidance necessary to combat the continued spread of COVID-19 and to reduce financial burdens on Arizonans by lowering health care costs associated with the virus. For more info, click here.


Executive Order 2020-07; Proactive Measures to Protect Against COVID-19: Requires that all insurers regulated by the state cover COVID-19 diagnostic testing from all qualified laboratories without regard to whether the laboratory is in-network.


Executive Order 2020-08; Limiting In-Person MVD Visits for Driver's License Renewals: Delays expiration dates on Arizona driver’s licenses to ensure residents over the age of 65 do not need to visit MVD offices for renewal. Additionally, as a separate announcement, Gov. Ducey and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) have waived emissions testing for vehicle owners 65 and older for up to one year to allow them to renew their vehicle registrations.


Executive Order 2020-09; Limiting the Operations of Certain Businesses to Slow the Spread of COVID-19: Requires restaurants in Arizona counties with confirmed COVID-19 cases to provide dine-out options only, and that all bars in those counties close. This also applies to movie theaters and gyms. To assist in mitigating the financial consequences of restaurant closures, the executive order also allows restaurants to deliver alcoholic beverages with the purchase of food.


Executive Order 2020-10; Delaying Elective Surgeries: Halts all elective surgeries in Arizona to free up medical resources and maintain the capacity for hospitals and providers to continue offering vital services. This will help keep critical personal protective equipment (PPE) available for the fight against COVID-19.


Executive Order 2020-11; Ensuring Individuals Whose Employment Is Affected by COVID-19 Have Access to Unemployment Insurance: Ensures those who are out of work or facing economic hardship because of COVID-19 have access to unemployment benefits. The administrative action issued by the Arizona Department of Revenue (ADOR) extends the income tax filing deadline to July 15, 2020 to mirror the new federal deadline.


Executive Order 2020-12; Prohibiting the Closure of Essential Services: Details what is considered an “essential service” in the event that a “shelter-in-place” order is necessary. This is a proactive and administrative measure that ensures the state has one consistent, overarching policy based on CDC and public health guidance.


Executive Order 2020-13; Enhanced Surveillance Advisory: Requires hospitals and testing laboratories to report key metrics that will inform the state’s response to COVID-19.


Executive Order 2020-14; Postponement of Eviction Actions: Delays the enforcement of eviction action orders for renters impacted by COVID-19. The order applies to renters who are quarantining due to COVID-19 or are facing economic hardship as a result of the outbreak. It will remain in effect for 120 days.


Executive Order 2020-15; Expansion of Telemedicine: Requires health care insurance companies to expand telemedicine coverage for all services that would normally be covered for an in-person visit. The order helps ensure that Arizonans who may be sick or under quarantine can access care from their homes and avoid potentially risky trips to a health care provider. It remains in effect until the termination of the declared public health emergency. 


Executive Order 2020-16; Increasing Hospital Capacity for COVID-19 Preparedness: Requires hospitals to increase the amount of hospital bed capacity in the state, take steps to optimize staffing levels and maximize critical resources in preparation for a potential influx of patients due to COVID-19.


Executive Order 2020-17; Expand Licensing Opportunities: Orders state agencies and boards to defer requirements to renew licenses that have an expiration date between March 1, 2020 and September 1, 2020 by six months from the expiration date, unless those requirements can be completed online. Additionally, they will defer requirements to complete continuing education by six months, unless those requirements can be completed online.


Significant Announcements


Regulatory Relief for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs): Gov. Ducey has notified the Center For Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) of his decision to exempt the State of Arizona from a federal regulation requiring Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) to be supervised by a physician. The reform will expand access to care, especially in rural areas, and free up physicians for other needed medical services. For more info, click here.


“Arizona Together” Initiative: Gov. Ducey launched the Arizona Together initiative to support Arizonans during the COVID-19 outbreak, connecting individuals and businesses to resources, raising money for community organizations and providing information on volunteer opportunities. A website,, serves as the centralized location for Arizonans to find help or provide support. For more info, click here.


Electric Utility Relief Package: Gov. Ducey and the state’s largest utilities announced a relief package to ensure that customers will not lose power due to inability to pay. Arizona Public Service (APS), Salt River Project (SRP) and Tucson Electric Power (TEP) have agreed that no home, hospital or businesses will have power shut off during the remainder of the crisis. In addition, no penalties, late fees or interest will be assessed during this time. They have committed more than $3 million to community support and to help customers facing financial hardships brought on by the pandemic. For more info, click here.


Special Health Care Enrollment Period: Gov. Ducey has requested a special enrollment period on the Federal Insurance Marketplace. If granted, the action would allow individuals who have recently lost a job or had their income reduced due to COVID-19 to access health care on the federal marketplace. For more info, click here.


$5.3 Million For Meals For Arizona Seniors: Arizona has received more than $5.3 million in grant funding from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to help Arizona communities provide meals for older adults. The dollars will support both meal delivery programs and programs serving senior centers and are part of a relief package, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, signed by President Trump on March 18, 2020. For more info, click here.


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