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The Oklahoma public health system has activated the Incident Command System and stands ready with a multitude of statewide and national partners to treat and minimize further spread. Public health officials will continue to work with health care providers and medical facilities to ensure proper assessment, testing and treatment protocols. State and local public health officials will continue to monitor travelers and any individuals who test positive for COVID-19.
Update April 1, 2020 | 5:00 PM
- Issued statewide Executive Order that:
- Enforces “Safer at Home” order across all 77 counties, requiring those age 65 and older and individuals who are immunocompromised or have pre-existing conditions to shelter in their homes, leaving only for essential needs like groceries or prescriptions, until April 30.
- Closes non-essential businesses across all 77 counties until April 30:
- Businesses deemed essential can be found here: https://www.okcommerce.gov/wp-content/uploads/Oklahoma-Essential-Industries-List.pdf
- Restaurants may remain open in these counties but must close their dine-in area, offering instead curbside pickup and delivery.
- Counties that must be in compliance can be found listed here: on www.coronavirus.health.ok.gov
- Suspends elective surgeries, minor medical procedures, and non-emergency dental procedures until April 30 to preserve medical supplies and PPE for COVID-19 response.
- Prohibits gatherings of 10 or more individuals.
- Prohibits visitors at nursing homes, retirement or long-term care facilities.
- Requires individuals to quarantine for 14 days once returning from the following states where national experts have identified significant community spread of COVID-19:
- New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Louisiana, California, Washington
- Copy of the latest executive order is here: https://www.sos.ok.gov/documents/executive/1924.pdf
- Activated the Oklahoma National Guard Regional Training Institute where 29 members of the Guard have been mobilized to observe COVID-19 developments and be ready to take any necessary actions requested by the governor to help communities and hospitals.
- Formed the Governor’s Solution Task Force to provide comprehensive solutions for COVID-19 pandemic, from forward planning for statewide hospital capacity to innovative strategizing for economic impact.
- Implemented statewide reporting requirements to collect and create transparent data of hospitals’ bed capacity, PPE supplies, and COVID-19 testing capacity. Data will be published regularly on this link: https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov/executive-order-reports
- Expanded the State’s ability to process COVID-19 tests by tenfold, filing an executive order on March 22 to allow the labs at Oklahoma State University (OSU) and the University of Oklahoma (OU) to perform COVID-19 testing. As of March 31, OSU’s lab is capable of processing 2,300 test kits a day, bringing the State’s total capacity to roughly 2,800 a day, so long as supplies are available.
- Opened 4 drive thru COVID testing locations, with more underway, in partnership with the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) and county health departments. Details on those locations can be found here: https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov
- Entered into a public-private partnership with multiple private labs, beginning March 20, to expand the State’s capacity to deliver COVID-19 testing results. A list of those labs and their processing times can be found in the Governor’s daily COVID-19 report beginning on March 30: https://coronavirus.health.ok.gov/executive-order-reports
Public Health and Health Care Providers:
- Transformed the State’s 2-1-1 hotline into a tool for Oklahomans to call and receive screening support for COVID-19.
- Suspended several regulations on telemedicine to ease capabilities for Oklahomans to receive medical support from a doctor without leaving home.
- Established expedited process for nurses with inactive licenses to get recertified.
- Extended licensing reciprocity for health care professionals, like doctors and nurses, who hold licenses to practice in other states.
- Suspended various regulations on truck drivers and commercial vehicles for transporting medical supplies and other critical items across state lines.
- Waived extra cost for hospitals and healthcare entities to increase broadband, made possible due to FCC waiver.
- Filed an Executive Order to protect health care workers and their families from discrimination related to housing or childcare.
- Placed requirements on delivery personnel to submit to screening upon request before entering any hospital, long term care facility or childcare facility. This screening would likely include a temperature check and short questionnaire about possible exposure to COVID-19.
- Received approval for State of Oklahoma’s request on March 17 for disaster loans for small businesses across all 77 counties who are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses and nonprofit groups can apply for up to $2 million in loans through the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.
- Deferred borrowers paying back SBA loans from previous disasters to December 31, 2020.
- Suspended the one-week waiting period before unemployment benefits can be paid and waved the work-search requirement for unemployment benefits.
- Deferred state tax filing and payments until July 15 without late fees or interest
- Extended expiration dates for all occupational licenses issued by any State agency, board or commission during the Declared State of Emergency period.
- Established stronger guidelines for Child Care facilities to prevent and/or respond to a COVID-19 positive case.
- Declared a State of Emergency allowing State Agencies to access all needed resources to proactively and aggressively respond to COVID-19 and to protect the health and safety of the public.
- Implemented a telework policy for state employees and banned out-of-state business travel for employees
Common Education – as directed by the State Superintendent, State Department of Education (SDE) Board:
- Closed all accredited PreK-12th grade public schools for students and educators for the remainder of the school year, as directed by the State Superintendent and SDE Board.
- Suspended academic assessments for grades 3-8 or to high school juniors and suspended Oklahoma School Report Cards for the 2019-2020 school year, as requested by the Oklahoma State Department of Education and approved by the U.S. Department of Education on March 20.
- Secured a federal waiver to soon provide 2 free meals a day for Oklahoma students from PreK to 12th grade through their local public schools. Announcement here.
- Waived extra cost for schools and libraries to increase bandwidth, made possible due to FCC waiver.
- Expiration on driver’s licenses issued by the State of Oklahoma are delayed until further notified.
- Extended the federal government’s RealID compliance requirements on driver’s licenses into 2021. Oklahoma DPS is still currently planning to begin issuing Real ID at the end of April.
- Vehicle tags are still available online at www/tax.ok.gov.
- Suspension of visitations for State prison facilities and State juvenile secure-care treatment centers until further notified.
- Closed all 7 State Veteran Centers for visitors. All essential staff must be checked for COVID-19 symptoms before entering the building, with all non-essential ODVA staff instructed to telework.
- Launched a state-federal partnership, between Attorney General Mike Hunter and U.S. District Attorney Tim Downing, to investigate and prosecute con artists attempting to defraud Oklahomans during the COVID-19 emergency. Reports of fraud or price gouging can be made by contacting the Office of the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Unit by calling 405-521-2029 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Put into statewide effective State’s price gouging statue, pursuant to action taken by the State Attorney General Mike Hunter
- Activated consumer alert on at-home coronavirus testing, action taken by the State Attorney General Mike Hunter that reminds Oklahomans to be on high alert for scam artists trying to sell or administer home-testing kits for COVID-19.